Surfinia, the hanging petunia


Surfinia is actually a kind of hanging petunia that bears hundreds of small bell-shaped flowers. It is often used as a cascading flower to cover balconies and deck overhangs.

Summary of surfinia facts

NamePetunia x surfinia
Family – Solanaceae or nightshade
Type – annual

Height – 6 to 20 inches (50 cm)
Exposure – sun or part sun
Soil – rather rich, not too chalky

Flowering – May to October

Even though it is a perennial in warmer latitudes, in temperate climates it is grown as an annual but its blooming nonetheless lasts a long time.

Planting, sowing surfinia

How to plant surfinia

It is recommended to plant this petunia in spring, after any risk of freezing is over, because it doesn’t survive freezing well.

  • Surfinia in flower beds
    Blend garden soil to soil mix.
  • Surfinia for pots, garden boxes, containers
    If you’ve purchased your plants in nursery pots, mix together garden earth and soil mix.
    It’s also possible to use only soil mix, since this would further boost plant growth and blooming.
  • Surfinia as a hanging plant
    Choose hanging plant soil mix which tends to be lighter, otherwise you’ll have problems with this type of planting.

Sowing seeds from a surfinia

Surfinia plants may produce seeds, though less than regular petunia. These seeds might also be sterile, since the plant is a hybrid (see the surfinia origin story below). However, experience shows that surviving seeds will also be very beautiful! Simply, they’re a new kind of petunia and not the actual “Surfinia Petunia ®” anymore.

  • For these seeds, practice sowing in a tray indoors, in your home, starting in February/March.
  • Simply press the seeds down to ensure they stick to the special “seedling soil mix”, without covering them over.
  • Water regularly to retain moisture, but not too much.
  • When the first leaves pop out, transplant to nursery pots and wait for the last frost to have passed before planting them outdoors.

Whether the plant is in a container or in the ground, select a sun-filled spot for maximum blooming.

Pruning and caring for surfinia

To enhance flower-bearing, you can remove wilted flowers regularly.

During spells of high temperatures, feel free to water in the evening to avoid having your petunia dry out.

  • It is preferable to let the ground dry up somewhat before watering again to avoid excess moisture.

Learn more about surfinia

Red-flowered hanging surfinia planted in a white hanging potThe Surfinia Petunia ® is a petunia hybrid that has the special trait of cascading down. Evidently, this makes it a great choice for suspended pot arrangements!

It shares with us the gift of bearing beautiful flowers for a long time.

It is a kind of weeping, cascading petunia that produces rolling swaths of flowers.

Since it is easy to grow, it will develop well in garden boxes, suspensions and also directly in the ground.

The blooming spreads from the beginning of spring until fall. It loves sun and well-drained fertile ground.

Where does surfinia come from?

The origin of the surfinia plant dates back to 1987. Surfinia was bred in Japan by Suntory Flowers. Initially, it started as a vigorous wild petunia discovered in Brazil. Dr. Sagazaki hybridized it with other petunias so that the many colors we see today could arise.

In short, the surfina is a petunia that gained a trailing habit and an excellent resistance to disease and other hardships. Even today, new patented varieties are developed and propagated through cuttings by growers across the world.

The word “Surfinia” is a trade name, and it refers specifically to plants multiplied through cuttings. Any seeds from these flowers that grow into flowers won’t be exactly the same because of cross-pollination, so they can’t be called “surfinia” anymore. They are, however, petunia!

Smart tip about surfinia

Flower your garden, balcony or terrace with surfinia for a landscape that is full of colors!

Surfinia on social media

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Picture related to Surfinia overlaid with the Instagram logo. Picture related to Surfinia overlaid with the Facebook logo. Picture related to Surfinia overlaid with the Pinterest logo.

Credits for images shared to Nature & Garden (all edits by Gaspard Lorthiois):
Pink surfinia flower (also on social media) by Toshihiro Gamo under © CC BY 2.0
Red hanging surfinia by Franziska Geiser under © CC BY-NC 2.0
Pink surfinia in Brugges, Belgium (also on social media) by Rosalyn & Gaspard Lorthiois, own work