Antirrhinum majus, more commonly known as a snapdragon, is an incredibly popular perennial flower.
It belongs to the Plantaginaceae family, the same family as the broadleaf plantains.
Snapdragons come in a variety of colours, ranging from yellow through to violet, with many strains of this common garden flower being multi-coloured.
The Flower Fields photograph by Rob Bertholf.
Snapdragons are commonly grown due to the intense level of colour they bring to garden designs and landscapes.
Typically, they bloom in the middle of the summer, although if proper care is taken, blossoming can continue throughout the fall. How much the snapdragons bloom is usually dependent on the amount of sun they receive.
Antirrhinum majus with cream flowers, photograph by Dinesh Valke; CC.
Snapdragon can be successfully planted outside in late fall, although it is more common to first grow seedlings indoors at 65°F (18°C), starting 10 to 12 weeks before the last frost, and then later transplant them outdoors.
While Antirrhinum majus plants are pretty cold resistant once successfully established in outdoor soil, it is a good idea to cover them with pine straw mulch during exceptionally chilly periods. This greatly helps this flower's longevity.
Antirrhinum majus hybrid, photograph by 阿橋 HQ; CC.
Snapdragons do not require a significant level of nutrients to grow, with only a minimal amount of organic material necessary. That being said, fertilizer is recommended once the flowers start to bloom as it can greatly lengthen the blossoming period.
Perhaps the most crucial detail to keep track of when growing snapdragons is watering.
When a snapdragon is first growing, it is important to keep the surrounding soil constantly moist.
As the flower reaches maturity, it will require to be saturated to roughly one inch (2.5 cm) deep once per week, with a moderate period in between watering to allow the soil to dry.
Antirrhinum majus plants, photograph by cultivar413; CC.
Snapdragon Golden gate cultivar, image by Andrey Zharkikh; CC.