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Scarlet Pentapetes Seeds (Pentapetes phoenicea)

$3.95
Item #:
600247
Availability:
Usually ships in 2-3 business days.
Item #:
600247
Availability:
Usually ships in 2-3 business days.

Description

Thomas Jefferson sowed seed of this tender, summer-flowering annual along the flower border on Monticello’s West Lawn in 1811, referring to it as “Scarlet Mallow.” He likely obtained the seed of this uncommon native of the Old World tropics from Philadelphia nurseryman Bernard McMahon, who noted “Scarlet Pentapetes” in his American Gardener’s Calendar, 1806. Scarlet Pentapetes is as rare in gardens today as it was in 1811. Pentapetes (“5 petals”) phoenicea (“scarlet”) forms a handsome plant with deep green, heavily-lobed leaves, and attractive, orange-red, mallow-like flowers that open around noon and close the following morning.

 

Sow seeds indoors 6-8 weeks before last frost date at 75˚F. Soak seeds in hot water for 12-24 hours before sowing to improve germination. Transplant to 3” pots once they have several true leaves, then harden off and plant outdoors in well-drained soil after last frost. Approximately 20 seeds per packet.

 

Exposure

Planting Method

Planting Depth

Plant Spacing

Size at Maturity

Zone

Full Sun

Transplant

1/4”

1.5’ apart

4’H

11

 

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