Ultimate Guide to 4 O’clock Flowers: Everything You Need to Know


Four O’clock flowers, also known as Mirabilis jalapa, are favored by gardeners worldwide for their beautiful blooms and fragrant scent. This native plant from Peru is loved for its large, trumpet-shaped flowers that come in a wide range of colors, including red, yellow, pink, and white. The name “Four O’clock” comes from the plant’s unique blooming pattern – the flowers open in the late afternoon, around four o’clock, and close again in the morning.

One of the great things about Four O’clock flowers is their ability to thrive in a variety of conditions. They can be grown in both sunny and partially shaded areas and are relatively easy to care for. The plants have moderate water needs and prefer neutral to slightly acidic soil. They can tolerate a wide range of temperatures and humidity levels, making them suitable for gardens in both the North and South.

If you’re looking to grow Four O’clock flowers in your garden, here are some tips to help you get started:

– Select a sunny or partially shaded spot in your garden to plant the seeds or seedlings.

– Prepare the soil by clearing any weeds and loosening it with a garden fork.

– Plant the seeds or seedlings about 6 to 12 inches apart and cover them with a thin layer of soil.

– Water regularly, keeping the soil moist but not waterlogged.

– Pruning is not necessary for Four O’clock flowers, but if you want to control their size or shape, you can trim them back in the early spring.

– Expect blooming to start in late spring or early summer and continue until the first frost.

Four O’clock flowers are not only ornamental but also attract pollinators like bees and moths to your garden. The plants produce seeds that can be stored and planted again the following year, making them a great addition to any gardener’s collection.

For more information on growing Four O’clock flowers and troubleshooting common problems, check out our featured articles. Happy gardening!

How to Grow and Care for Four O’Clock Plants

Four O’Clock plants, also known as Mirabilis jalapa, are beautiful and ornamental flower plants that are native to South America. These plants are named after their unique characteristic of blooming in the late afternoon, around 4 o’clock. They are loved by many gardeners for their bright and vibrant flowers that come in various colors like red, yellow, pink, and white.

If you’re interested in growing Four O’Clock plants in your garden, there are a few key rules to follow. First, select a well-draining soil with a neutral pH level. These plants prefer full sun to grow and thrive, so make sure to plant them in an area that receives at least 6-8 hours of direct sunlight every day.

When it comes to watering, Four O’Clock plants are quite hardy and can withstand some drought. However, they do appreciate regular watering, especially during dry seasons. Water the plants deeply once or twice a week, ensuring that the soil is evenly moist but not waterlogged. Avoid overwatering as it can lead to root rot.

Fertilizer can be beneficial for the growth and flowering of Four O’Clock plants. You can use a balanced fertilizer once a month during the growing season. Be careful not to overfertilize as it may lead to excessive leaf growth and fewer flowers.

The best time to plant Four O’Clock plants is in spring, after the last frost date. Prepare the soil by loosening it and removing any weeds or debris. Plant the seeds about 1/4 inch deep and 12 inches apart. Keep the soil consistently moist until the seeds germinate, which usually takes about 7-14 days.

Once the plants have sprouted, they will grow fairly quickly. Four O’Clock plants can reach a height of 2-3 feet and have large, glossy green leaves. These plants can also be propagated by dividing their tuberous roots in early spring or overwintering them indoors.

Four O’Clock plants are generally disease and pest-resistant, but they can encounter some problems like leaf curling or fungal diseases. If you notice any issues, it’s best to ask a horticulture expert for guidance or refer to updated articles about common plant problems and their solutions.

Whether you’re looking to add some color to your garden or want to enjoy the beauty of these native South American plants, Four O’Clock plants are a great choice. With their stunning flowers and easy care, they can be a featured attraction in any garden. So why wait? Start growing Four O’Clock plants and enjoy their beautiful blooms!

Four O’Clock Plant Care

The Four O’Clock plant, also known as “Mirabilis jalapa”, is a common flower that is native to the Andes. These flowers bloom in the morning and are known for their vibrant colors and delightful fragrance. In this article, we will provide you with information on how to care for your Four O’Clock plants to ensure they thrive in your garden.

  • Planting: Four O’Clock plants can be grown from seeds. It’s best to sow the seeds directly into the garden soil after the last frost. Select a location that receives full sun, as these plants thrive in bright light.
  • Watering: Four O’Clock plants require regular watering, especially during hot and dry weather. However, be careful not to overwater them, as this can lead to root rot. Water the plants deeply and allow the soil to dry out slightly between waterings.
  • Fertilizing: Four O’Clock plants are not heavy feeders. A balanced, slow-release fertilizer applied once a month during the growing season is sufficient to promote healthy growth and blooming.
  • Pruning: Pruning Four O’Clock plants is not necessary. However, if you want to control their size or shape, you can prune them in early spring before new growth starts. Remove any dead or damaged branches to maintain the plant’s overall health and appearance.
  • Pests and Diseases: Four O’Clock plants are relatively resistant to pests and diseases. However, keep an eye out for common issues like aphids or spider mites. If necessary, treat the infested plants with appropriate pesticides or insecticidal soap.
  • Winter Care: Four O’Clock plants are sensitive to frost and do not tolerate cold temperatures well. If you live in an area with harsh winters, consider growing these plants as annuals or dig up the tubers and store them in a cool, dry place until the next season.

By following these care tips, you can expect your Four O’Clock plants to bloom beautifully and bring joy to your garden year after year. If you have any specific questions or need more information about growing Four O’Clock plants, check out our series of articles on horticulture or consult a reliable gardening source.


Four o’clock flowers, also known as Mirabilis jalapa, are versatile plants that can grow in a variety of light conditions. Although they prefer full sun, they can also tolerate partial shade. When plants are grown in full sun, they will often produce more blooms and have healthier foliage.

If you are starting your four o’clock garden from seed, ensure that you provide the plants with enough light for proper germination. Four o’clock seeds need plenty of light to sprout, so place them in a sunny location or under a grow light for best results.

Once your plants have started to grow, make sure they receive at least 4-6 hours of direct sunlight each day. This will promote healthy growth and flowering. If the plants are not getting enough light, they may become leggy and produce fewer flowers.

In hotter regions, four o’clocks may benefit from some afternoon shade to protect them from the intense heat. The flowers can withstand high temperatures, but the leaves may start to curl or become scorched if exposed to too much direct sunlight.

Some gardeners choose to plant four o’clocks in areas with morning sun and afternoon shade. This helps protect the plants from the hot afternoon sun while still providing them with enough light for healthy growth. Experiment with different lighting conditions to find what works best for your four o’clocks in your particular garden.

It’s important to note that four o’clocks can be somewhat adaptable when it comes to lighting conditions. They can tolerate a range of light, but their preference is still full sun. So if you want the most accurate results and the best blooming performance, try to provide them with as much sunlight as possible.

When choosing a location for your four o’clock flowers, consider the specific light conditions in your garden. Take note of how much sunlight different areas receive throughout the day, and choose a spot that receives the ideal amount of light for your plants to thrive.

Overall, four o’clocks are fairly low maintenance plants when it comes to light requirements. They can grow and bloom well in various lighting conditions, making them a favored choice for gardeners looking for versatile plants that can adapt to different environments.


Four o’clock flowers, also known as Mirabilis jalapa, are a popular choice for gardeners due to their vibrant and beautiful blooms. These flowers can grow in a wide range of soil conditions, making them suitable for many different climates. Whether you live in a hot and humid location like Peru or a more moderate climate, you can easily grow these flowers in your garden.

When it comes to soil, four o’clock flowers are not very picky. They prefer well-drained soil that is rich in organic matter. A neutral pH level is also favored by these plants. If you’re not sure about the pH level of your soil, you can always get it tested. Once you know the pH level, you can make any necessary adjustments to create the optimal growing conditions for your four o’clock flowers.

It is important to note that four o’clock flowers are not frost-tolerant. If you live in an area where frost is common, you should wait until after the danger of frost has passed to plant your seeds or seedlings. In colder climates, you may need to start your four o’clock flowers indoors and then transplant them outside once the weather warms up.

When it comes to watering, four o’clock flowers like to be kept somewhat moist but not overly wet. They do not like to sit in waterlogged soil, so it’s important to ensure proper drainage. Water deeply and thoroughly, allowing the soil to dry out slightly between waterings. During periods of hot and dry weather, you may need to water more frequently.

In terms of light conditions, four o’clock flowers prefer full sun. They will tolerate some shade, but they may not bloom as profusely as they would in full sun. If you have a shady location, you can still grow four o’clock flowers, but be aware that they may not produce as many blooms.

As for pruning and fertilizing, four o’clock flowers do not require much effort. Deadheading spent blooms will encourage new growth and prolong the blooming period. You can also prune back the foliage to promote bushier growth. In terms of fertilizer, a balanced all-purpose fertilizer can be applied once a month during the growing season.

One interesting fact about four o’clock flowers is that they are often pollinated by moths. The flowers bloom in the late afternoon, releasing a fragrance that attracts moths. The moths then pollinate the flowers, ensuring the production of seeds for future generations.

Whether you are a seasoned gardener or just starting out, four o’clock flowers are a great choice. They are easy to grow, tolerant of a wide range of soil conditions, and produce beautiful and fragrant blooms. So, if you’re looking to add some color and beauty to your garden, consider planting some four o’clock flowers – you won’t be disappointed!

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Dr Heidi Parkes

By Dr Heidi Parkes

Senior Information Extension Officer QLD Dept of Agriculture & Fisheries.