Yard Smarts Grow blooms in bold colors
Spice up your summer garden with easy-to-grow flowers in hot hues.
Attention-grabbing red, orange and yellow flowers add some serious pop to your summer yard. The vivid hues, strategically placed, act as exclamation points when scattered among a big yard’s greenery, and the eye-popping patches tie distant sections together. In a smaller yard, use hot shades in containers wherever you may need a burst of happiness. They look especially welcoming on a porch or deck or along a garden path.
To paint a sea of bright color, annuals are your best bet. They last only one season, but their constant blooms offer a big bang for your buck. For a stunning first impression, invest in several flats or seed packets of annuals and place them in wide beds. Large groupings create visual drama, especially when they consist of just one type of flower in a single color or similar hues. If you’re planting many kinds of flowers, amp up the charm by grouping each type in its own section.
Most hot-colored annuals are sun lovers. The easiest to grow are begonia, celosia, cleome, cosmos, marigold, pentas, petunia, salvia, sunflower, verbena and zinnia. Zinnias are a super choice—they come
in many colors, sizes and shapes. Plus, the more you cut, the more blooms you’ll get.
And check out sun tolerant coleus; it makes a statement with bright foliage instead of flowers.
Perk up shadowy spots with colorful impatiens varieties, including garden balsam, New Guinea and hybrids. These types stand up to the downy mildew disease that affects impatiens in so many parts of the country.
Most begonias grow well in the shade—and sun. Choose from wax leaf, Dragon Wing, tuberous and Bolivian begonias. And try planting wishbone flower, vinca and the shade-loving types of coleus. When choosing coleus, always check the tag to see if it thrives in sun or shade.
Many perennials bloom in brilliant colors, but most put on a flower show for only one to three weeks. Double-check tags before buying to see if the plants are winter-hardy in your region.
For sun-seeking perennials with longer-lasting blooms, try planting coneflower, red valerian, salvia and yarrow.
Dahlias and cannas offer a gorgeous blaze. To grow them for a second season, dig up the tubers in fall and store them until spring in a cool, dry place that doesn’t freeze.
Luscious Royale Cosmo lantana features hot magenta and orange blooms.
Add a fiery bronze color with Freckles coleus.
Infinity Orange Frost New Guinea impatiens Colorblaze Alligator Tears coleus Goldilocks creeping Jenny