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Hairy Balls, Gomphocarpus physocarpus - 25 seeds avg.

Fuzzy green pods the size of tennis balls! This member of the milkweed family is a favorite of butterflies, bees, and flower arrangers.

Planting Tips:
  • A warm-season annual that prefers full sun.
  • Plant after danger of frost and once soil has warmed.
  • Start seeds indoors 4-6 weeks before planting date or cast seeds directly in the garden, spacing 12"-14" apart.
  • Cover seed with 1/8” of soil; allow 14-21 days to germinate.
  • Grows to 60” tall.
  • Pinch when 10" tall to establish a more robust, branching plant.
  • 90-120 days to bloom.
Keep the Blooms Coming:
  • Produces an insignificant little flower that is followed by the ball-shaped seedpod.
  • Harvest pod at any stage, making the harvest cut at the base of the stem.

1 review for Hairy Balls

  1. Lisa (store manager)

    Jennifer we start the seeds indoors in seed starting mix and plant outdoors out once they are 3-5 weeks old. I’ve never sown seeds directly into compost. Gomphocarpus requires significant consistent heat to sprout which is why we start indoors. Where are you located? Even here in southern Virginia we are still having cool nights which are not good for direct seeding warm-season annuals outdoors.
    Lisa

  2. Ann McCaskey (verified owner)

    I grew these in my backyard last summer, and they grew like weeds, at least 5′ tall. My neighbors loved them and I gave some cut stems to them enjoy. They were very easy to grow, I live in Pittsburgh, Pa. and we had a very wet and sometimes windy summer. The stalks were very sturdy and they stood up very well. I thought I might be able to dry a few stems but that didn’t go well, the pods eventually break open and seeds will be everywhere. I am going to grow them again and so is my daughter.

    • Lisa (store manager)

      Harvest with the pods a little smaller and immature. This helps to prevent bursting.
      Lisa

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