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Frequently Asked Questions

Where to Find Wave

The first thing you can do is check the Where to Buy to see if there are other garden centers in your area that carry Wave Petunia and Cool Wave Pansy plants.

If there is not one in your area, you can order authentic Wave seeds and plants through mail order companies that will ship directly to your home.

You can also visit your local retailer and make a request to order Wave Petunias or Cool Wave Pansies for the next growing season. If your store does not sell Wave Petunias, ask them why. Send us a quick note and let us know what they said by using the Contact Us page.

Where to Plant

It is not recommended that you plant your Wave Petunias in the same place every year. You'll see the best results if you do not plant them in the same bed two consecutive years. Move them around your garden. They are great in containers and baskets or try some in another sunny bed. For baskets and containers, dispose of the old soil and replace with new, fresh potting soil each year.

Rotate your Wave Petunia beds and you'll enjoy the best performing plants year after year. Farmers have been practicing crop rotation with great success for years.

Choose a bright, sunny location with at least 6 hours of direct sunlight. Sun is a MUST to keep your plants blooming and looking their best all season.

Additional Planting Tips

Wave Petunias can be planted in just about any sunny location. They have outstanding garden performance, plus they also work well in hanging baskets, large containers and window boxes.

A few things to remember ...

  • Maintain the same plant depth as the original pot or pack
  • Space Wave and Easy Wave 12 to 24 in. (30 to 60 cm) apart in garden beds
  • Tidal Wave Petunias grow according to how you space them - Spaced 12 in. (30 cm) apart, they form a dense, mounded hedge - Spaced a little farther apart – about 18 in. (45 cm) – they will perform as large mounded plants.

For lush, full container displays, place 3 plants in a 10 to 12-in. (25 to 30-cm) container, hanging basket or patio planter. Larger containers will require additional plants for an attractive, proportioned display.

Provide plant nutrition in the soil with a slow release fertilizer, and continue to feed your vigorous Waves every two weeks with a liquid feed to keep those blooms coming! We have more how-to advice here.

Care and Maintenance

Wave Petunias are low-maintenance; you don't have to cut the plants back or remove dead flowers. The faded blooms will dry up and drop off the plants on their own, with more appearing continuously all season long.

Wave petunias, if grown as recommended in full sun (at least 5-6 hours per day) and regularly watered and fertilized (once a week with liquid feed, or with slow release fertilizer per directions), should not require pinching.

The more established the plant, the more heat tolerant it is. If you can, plant your Wave Petunias early enough to enable them to establish strong root systems before high temperatures set in.

The Dallas Arboretum named Tidal Wave Silver as the most heat tolerant petunia for the state of Texas.

Don't let your Wave Petunias dry out between waterings. They need plenty of water, but keep in mind that the soil in beds and containers must be well-drained and containers dry out faster than in-ground beds. If possible, water your plants in the morning so the foliage dries before evening.

Wave Petunias are heavy "feeders." The full potential of Wave Petunias will not be realized from hungry plants. Apply a liquid fertilizer every 10 to 14 days or use a combination of liquid and a slow-release fertilizer. Always follow the recommendations shown on the labels!

Using a mulch protects the roots and conserves moisture, however, Wave Petunias form their own solid mat of color as they grow.

Wave Petunias really perform best when planted outdoors during the Summer months. The conditions indoors, even in a sunny spot, are tough on Wave Petunias, as with many other Summer garden plants. We recommend starting fresh each Spring with new, young plants for the best performing petunias!

Wave Petunias were really developed to be planted once during the season and then allowed to die after the first frost. In very mild climates like Southern Florida, Texas and coastal Southern California – Wave Petunias will grow through the Winter. The rest of North America gets frost during late Autumn and Wave does not survive the Winter months, especially in containers and baskets. We recommend starting fresh each Spring with new, young plants for the best performing petunias!


If this happens to your Wave Petunia plants, it may be a sign the plant needs more fertilizer. A regular application of a soluble fertilizer every 10 to 14 days is recommended. Applying a slow-release fertilizer when you plant is also beneficial, although it may be depleted by late Summer. The use of a soluble fertilizer throughout the growing season is recommended, even if slow-release has been used.

We recommend that you rotate bed plantings every year and replace the soil in containers. We have found that this simple step minimizes the loss of plants. Wave petunias require at least six hours of full sun to perform at their best.

And Wave Petunias are heavy "feeders"! If possible, mix a tablespoon of dry or slow-release fertilizer with the soil or into the hole when you are planting your Wave Petunias. This will provide constant food as the plant grows. If you are using a standard fertilizer, like Miracle Gro®, try fertilizing twice as often as usual to promote new growth. However, even after increasing the feed, it may take as long as 10 to 14 days to see significant growth throughout.

Also, maintain adequate moisture. The plants should not be so dry that they start to wilt. Wilting is not only a sign of the plant needing water, but can also mean that the roots are dying. The best practice for watering is to test the soil by poking your finger down in the soil at least 2.5 to 3 in. If it's still moist, you do not need to water. During the hottest months of the Summer, you may need to water every day or twice a day for small containers. Check for insect damage. Use the recommended insecticide for the specific pest or another control you prefer.

If you have done all of this and your plants are still not performing well, it may be best to take one of your plants to a local nursery to help determine the possible cause of the problem. You can also contact a Master Gardeners or University/Extension Agent in your area.

We suggest you purchase a garden pesticide that is recommended for petunias or flowers in general. Follow the instructions on the label and it should control the insect problem accordingly.

Check closely to make sure it isn't dirt or even seed from the plant. It may be an insect, in which case a pesticide may be needed. Consult an expert to identify the pest and suggestions for the best treatment.

There are two things to keep in mind: the natural growth habit of the plant you purchased and you are fertilizing and watering them.

As you know, there are different series of Ride The Wave Petunias that have different growth habits. Double check the tag to make sure you know which Wave series you are growing. You can get more info in the Which Wave is which? Section of this site.

Also, it could be how much you are feeding the plants. Again, Wave Petunias are heavy feeders and like lots of fertilizer to growth lush and strong. When planted in the ground, the plants get feed from the soil, so you only have to fertilize every two weeks or so. Obviously, containers and hanging baskets require more feeding – sometimes twice a week during the Summer.

Other Topics

Since Wave Petunias are "hybrids" – crossing two "parent" plants to get a specific "offspring" – the plants you purchase from the garden center each year are really one-of-a-kinds. Any seed that is taken from Wave Petunias will not grow into the same Wave plant and very likely will not perform in the same way.

And since each Wave series is legally protected and trademarked, collecting and re-planting Wave seeds infringes on our intellectual property. It is best to start fresh each Spring with new, young plants for the best performing petunias!

It is a difficult task to breed certain colors into petunias and even more of a challenge to make sure the plants have an exceptional spreading habit like the rest of the Wave family. Our plant breeding team is continually working to improve and add to the Wave color palette, and we are excited about the recent introduction of Easy Wave Yellow and Shock Wave Yellow. Be on the lookout for more "new color news" from Wave!