Godetia (Godetia grandiflora) is also called satin flower. Godetia is a compact, bushy annual which grows to a height of 15 inches. The leaves are oblong and pointed. The flowers are satin-textured, funnel shaped, and two inches across. They are arranged in clusters and may be pink, red, or carmine. They are often blotched with a darker shade of color. The blooms happen in the spring. This plant is native to North America, ranging from British Columbia to lower California. Godetia is frequently grown as a cut flower and will survive five to ten days in a vase of water. It also makes a nice container plant.
Godetia grows from twelve to thirty inches tall, depending on the variety. It grows quickly, blooming thirty to sixty days after the seed is sown. Seeds should be sown early in the season and covered with 1/8th inch of soil. Godetia prefers slightly acidic soil.
They can also be started indoors six to eight weeks before the last frost, and then transplanted outside once the danger of frost is gone. If you start them indoors, you need to use a grow light because the seed will not germinate unless it is in the light. They are also prone to damping off and dying from root disturbance when planted indoors then moved. The plants should be planted sixteen to twenty inches apart. The plants will not do well if they are crowded. Seed may be sown in the fall in zones nine through ten. This will result in larger flowers than spring sowing.
Godetia does not do well during high temperatures and high humidity, so planting them in early spring and fall is the best way to get to enjoy them.
Godetia must be planted in the sun. It needs well drained soil to grow. The best way to ensure it has well draining soil is to till the bed to a depth of six inches. Cover the soil with three inches of compost. Till the compost into the soil until it is well mixed.
After sowing Godetia seeds or transplanting Godetia plants, water in well. Keep the soil around the Godetia plants moist, but not soggy. Too much water will cause root rot.
Fertilize Godetia when planted with a well balanced fertilizer such as 10-10-10. Fertilize monthly during the growing season. Do not fertilize Godetia when it is dormant.
Godetia freely reseeds. If you do not want it to do so, you will need to deadhead the flowers before the seed forms. To collect the seed, let the pods dry out and then pick them. Twist them open to get to the seeds. Prune Godetia back after they have finished blooming.
If you allow Godetia to reseed, you will have to thin the seedlings so they are sixteen to twenty inches apart. Overcrowding can lead to disease problems.
Godetia are attractive to bees, butterflies, and birds. Godetia is also drought tolerant.