Zinnia Facts

Zinnia Facts
Zinnia is herbaceous plant that belongs to the aster family. There are 20 species and more than 100 cultivars of zinnia, that differ in size, color and growing habits. Zinnia is native to Mexico, South America and southwestern parts of USA. It thrives in areas with hot climate, usually in scrublands and dry grasslands. Zinnia grows on fertile, well-drained soil, exposed to direct sunlight. Thanks to low-maintenance and beautiful flowers, zinnia is one of the most commonly cultivated ornamental plants in the world.
Interesting Zinnia Facts:
Zinnia is bushy herbaceous plant. It produces numerous hairy branches that can reach 4 to 48 inches in height, depending on the cultivar.
Zinnia has narrow, lance-shaped leaves that have rough, sandpaper-like texture. Leaves are oppositely arranged on the stem.
Zinnia produces single flower head on top of the flowering stem. Flower head consists of small, fertile flowers gathered in the central disk, surrounded by petal-shaped row of infertile flowers. Flower head can be one to seven inches wide. Zinnia produces flowers with both types of reproductive organs (perfect flowers).
Flowers of zinnia can be white, yellow, orange, pink, red, lilac, purple or multi-colored. Flower heads of some zinnia produce single row of petals (with clearly visible central disk), while other have semi-double (many rows of petals with visible central disk) and double rows of petals (numerous rows of petals that completely cover central disk). Petals can be curved, twisted or pointed. Some zinnias produce dome-shaped flower heads.
Zinnia blooms from mid-summer until the first frost. Flowers attract butterflies and hummingbirds, which are responsible for the pollination of these plants.
Fruit of zinnia is dry achene filled with one seed.
Zinnia is self-sowing plant, which means that it scatters the seed without external help.
Zinnia is named after Johann Gottfried Zinn, famous German botanist who described this plant.
Zinnia is known as "cut and come again flowers" because of the ability to produce new flower buds shortly after cutting the flowering stem above the leaves.
Before it became popular in horticulture, zinnia was considered ugly, small and unattractive. Nickname "sickness of the eye", coined by Spanish people in the past, is still used to describe this plant in Mexico.
Zinnia is frequently cultivated in butterfly gardens (gardens composed of plants which attract butterflies).
Zinnia is excellent companion plant, because it attracts hummingbirds which eliminate whiteflies (insects that feed on the leaves of various plants in the gardens).
Zinnias are very popular cut flowers that are used for the preparation of various bouquets and dried floral arrangements. Vase life of zinnia is 7 days.
Zinnia symbolizes friendship in the language of flowers.
Zinnia can be cultivated as annual (lifespan: one year) or perennial plant (lifespan: more than 2 years), depending on the climate.

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