I'm going to plant annuals for the first time in a bed that has some
"issues." First of all, it has several large-ish shrubs in it
(competition for water) that can't be removed yet. Secondly, it was
originally mulched with 2-3 inches of stones, probably 50% of which
have been removed (some dirt showing through; goal is to eventually
remove all the stones). Thirdly, when the last people tired of
maintaining the bed, they overplanted with English ivy, which has
turned into a nightmare (much of it has been removed, but it's an
ongoing battle). Finally, the bed is packed full (and I do mean FULL)
of bulbs, which of course look spectacular right now, and I don't want
to disrupt them. (Annuals won't be planted until the bulb flowers
have gone to foliage and will need to be worked in around the foliage
until it dies off.)
So, finally, the question: Do you think I would be more successful
planting some seeds, e.g., Cosmos, Zinnias, Marigolds, or something,
and letting them come up somewhat randomly in and around the rocks,
ivy, et al? Or would I likely have better success with plants, most
likely the typical Petunias, Salvia, Geraniums, etc.?
The bed has fairly good soil, 6-7 hours of sun, east side of the house
(sunlight reflecting from white siding, wind protection), zone 5.
Thanks in advance for your advice!