Some favorite old-fashioned annuals should be planting in December or January for spring flowers.
Scatter seeds of larkspur, cornflowers and poppies in prepared beds. Rake lightly, scatter the seeds, lightly cover, and then water gently. After the seedlings appear and have true leaves, thin to 4-6 inches apart and water again.
Another favorite annual is sweet peas. There are several different varieties such as early flowering, climbing and new giants. Select a location that gets at least a half day of sun and protection from north winds. These seeds should be soaked overnight in water for best results. Work soil 8 to 10 inches deep and plant about 1 inch deep and 2 inches apart in the bottom of the trench. Climbers need a fence or trellis to grow on. When they begin flowering, sweet peas should be cut every day to insure continuous blooming. This is a great job for children or grandchildren.
Pat Massad, former Smith County Master Gardener
Texas A&M AgriLife Extension Service