TALKING GARDENING with DOUG – The Colors of Summer


Whether you like the colors of orange, red, yellow, blue, white, purple or just a rainbow of colors you can get it with beautiful blooming perennials this time of year.

We are smack dab in the middle of summer.  We are challenged to be gardeners because of the heat and the heat index.  With some simple planning, we can have flowers blooming consistently throughout the summer.

As I mentioned in an earlier blog, June is Perennial Gardening Month as stipulated by the Perennial Plant Association.  The reason for June is because so many perennials are blooming in June.

The same can be said for July.  July is a wonderful month to see many beautiful perennials in peak bloom giving us color for the summer.  Because of so many perennials in bloom this time of year, we are still bringing in new perennial stock on a weekly basis.  Being that these perennials are grown in containers, it is easy to be successful with planting in July.  And, all our perennials are grown here in Virginia which allows you to determine what time of year that you can expect to see them in bloom for the coming years.

All that these plants require is a little attention from time to time with the water hose.  Newly planted plants do not have an extended root system establish so they need a little more attention to make it through the summer heat and possible dry spells.

Summer Bloomers

Here is a list of dependable, lovely perennials that can be planted now for mid-summer color:

1.        Coreopsis – many varieties, many colors.  The variety ‘Zagreb’ is a native.

2.       Buddleia – “Butterfly bush” – many varieties, different colors.  If you like to watch butterflies then this is a must plant in your garden.

3.       Daylilies – so many varieties with so many colors to choose from.  Easy care.

4.       Hibiscus – beautiful large flowers right now.  Some of the flowers can be dinner plate size.

5.       Asclepias tuberosa – “Butterfly weed”  –  this is a must plant to have to support our Monarch butterflies.  Also, this is a native plant.

6.       Nepata – “Catmint” – bees love this plant.  I can stand by this plant for a long time just to watch the bees in action.

7.       Rudbeckia – “Black-eyed Susan” – yellow daisy form flower with a dark, brown center.  Will bloom most of the late summer.

8.       Solidago – “Goldenrod” – beautiful yellow flowers.  A native.

9.       Summer Phlox – different colors to choose from.  A native.

10.   Lobelia cardinalis – “Cardinal flower” – a Virginia native with beautiful red flowers

11.   Agastache – “Mexican hyssop”  –  different varieties in different colors.  A must plant to draw bees to a garden.

12.   Verbena ‘Homestead Purple’ – a native ground cover that will cover the ground with beautiful purple flowers in the summer.

I could go on and on with more varieties.


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