Summer Garden Color in the Southwest
Summer time poses some challenges for the southwest area. For one the temperatures can get up to 115 degree farenheit. That is some serious heat. Blooms, flowers, seedlings will suffer
as a result from the blazing hot sun.
So, what is a gardener to do when mid summer comes around? I'll answer that with one word - Water. Yes, provide your plants with more water even well established
plants, shrubs and trees. You will be amazed at how much better they will look.
Flowering annuals that you could use in full sun
Heat wave petunias - Make sure the description on the lave read "WAVE PETUNIAS". Other petunias will still look good in temps up to about 95 maybe 100 tops.
There many species of petunias and Color Your World nursery will have these plants during the spring, summer and fall seasons. Grandiflora, multiflora and miliflora from deep dark purple to
Lantana - There are numerous varities. From the creeping gold to the bright Dallas red. They thrive in heat and reflected heat is no problem for them.
These plants are a good choice for xeriscape landscaping.
Trim back during the winter season and cover with compost or burlap to keep roots warm and alive. They
will respond well in late spring.
Phlox - There is creeping Phlox or Moss Phlox. Both do well in heat. Remember more water...the better looking during extreme heat.
Portulaca - These plants are drought tolerant and heat resistant. They do well in hanging baskets or containers and are not prone to insects or diseases.
Rudbeckia - Also called Black-Eye-Susan. Is heat tolerant flower plant hower the extreme will sometimes prevenet them from blooming through out the hot summer months. More water
during this period will help with longer lasting blooms. You might want to plant them full sun during spring but provide them with shade in mid summer.
Zinnia - Easy care good looking annual. There colors are white, yellow, orange, red, purple, and lilac. The flower seems to grow right from the middle of the leaves (no stalk).
Plant them in the foreground with taller plants in the background.
Marigolds - "I Believe in Marigolds" yes, I do. These are great flowering annuls for the southwest. Plant them in bunches they'll look much better. They
can tolerate the heat as long as you give them lots of...water.
Verbena - This plant is considered an annual but many will come back the next season by re-seeding. There are about 250 species of verbena most of them will do well in the Southwest.
They come in white to a deep dark purple. Sand verbena and creeping are the most common.
Dusty miller - It's leaves are white and dusty looking, thus it's common name. It can get about 2ft tall and wide and can be used for container gardening or planted as a background
for shorter more colorful plants.
Gazania - This annual looks very much like a daisy but is much more heat tolerant and can tolerate poor soil. They can grow to about 1ft. tall and wide. Plant them in full blazing sun extra
watering during the mid summer.
Crape Myrtles for summer color
The Tuscarora Crape Myrtle Bright Coral Pink Flowering Tree
The Rich Red Dynamite Crape Myrtle
The Natchez White Blooming Crape Myrtle
The Hardy Hibiscus dinner plate size red flower
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