2023 Field Notes

Cosmos -- Cosmos bipinnatus -- Sensation Mix and Double Click


Sown 4/6
Germination 4/8 (2 days)

Germination counts
4/8, 6pm: 2
4/9, 8am: 27
4/9, 1pm: 38
4/9, 8pm: 40
4/10, 7am: 50
4/10, 4pm: 55
4/11, 7am: 60
4/11, 5pm: 61
Final Count After Thinning: 50

4/6 -- Sown into a 50 cell tray, covered seeds lightly as instructed. Half the tray was new Double Click mix seed, the other half was leftover Sensation Mix from last year. Used potting mix, bottom watered after sowing. Cosmos seeds are way easier than most other things I've sown this year. Was able to double up certain cells due to an abundance of seeds (32 Double Click, 40 Sensation).

4/8 -- Germination! These are fast again this year, also showed up after only two days last year.

4/10 -- Germinating like crazy, as expected.

4/11 -- Almost done here, up to 61 germinated, but likely a few more coming. I sowed 72 of these in total, so 61/72 is 85%. Way to go Cosmos! Can't compare with last year because I did three per cell and then didn't keep track of how many germinated in total. I expect we could get a few more, would be cool to push 90%.

4/14 -- Nothing to note here other than the fact that these are growing nicely.

4/23 -- Thinned these today. 50 plants remain in the 50 cell tray. Of the 61 that germinated, 15 were pulled and four were moved into spots where nothing had germinated. Not sure the move is going to take, we'll monitor over the coming days.

4/29 -- It looks like my move caused no issues. Good thing, because I just found a cell that I didn't thin, so planning to move him and get a bonus seedling! Same as last year, these are growing fast, very happy, maybe the best thing going in the greenhouse right now.

5/25 -- 32 of these into a 4x8 bed, using 12 inch grid spacing. I had a serious debate on whether or not to attempt to pinch these - it seems to be recommended, but I was quite happy with my non-pinched Cosmos last year. They were very tall plants but made many flowers, the only issue is that the plants got so large, they were a bit unruly. In the end, decided for now not to pinch, and to support them with horizontal hortonova instead. I think this is the right call - bushier plants in a constrained space (such as a 4x8 bed) seems a bit risky. I have 18 additional non-transplanted Cosmos that I can experiment with elsewhere. Watered these in with the phosphorus-rich fertilizer, will be adding the horizontal support over the next week. These plants are already a foot tall so these are the most in need of that support.

6/1 -- First flower showed up two days ago - from a Sensation Mix plant, although there is a Double Click not too far away.

6/9 -- Four of these now have flowers, and more coming. These are also getting tall in a hurry.

6/13 -- Mostly good news here - these continue to look good and some of them are making nice flowers. On the downside, I lost two of them two days ago, snapped over at the base of the soil, for reasons unknown. It didn't look like a critter got to them but I don't have another explanation. Fortunately I was able to replace them (they were both Sensation Mix). I also transplanted the remaining nine of these into a different spot in the yard a few days ago, we'll see how they do!

6/25 -- No trouble here, these are doing well. For support - I really was too late in the game to do the horizontal trellis solution I used elsewhere, so for now, I've basket weaved the two outer rows to provide extra support. I will probably also basket weave the inner rows at some point in the near future. It isn't the best solution but it should work to give them extra support.

7/2 -- Zero issues here. These are growing well and getting very tall. Deadheading protocol firmly in place now.

8/5 -- These are fine for the most part. I do have two curiousities, though - two plants that are extremely tall and very healthy looking that just aren't really producing flowers. Very odd indeed - they have neighbors making flowers, but they aren't. Not sure what to make of it!

8/12 -- These have gotten more and more unruly over the last few weeks, to the point where I now have some of these falling over and needing individual staking. Most of them are more than six feet tall and a few of them have stems that have to be an inch wide. In other words, very successful, but maybe too successful, as they're flopping all over each other!

8/25 -- Absolutely enormous plants that are still producing flowers, but seem to be slowing down. I have managed to stabilize them and don't have them falling all over each other any longer, so that's good!

9/22 -- These have wound down considerably the last few weeks. Only a double that was a fairly late bloomer is still making flowers.