Top Summer Blooming Plants
Customers often want summer blooming plants for a beautiful aesthetic. Ensure the blooms you choose can survive summer temperatures so customers can enjoy the colors long-term.
September 14, 2023
In the high heat of summer, plants can wilt and look tired. This is also the season when spring flowering material goes out of bloom. Between these two factors, landscapes can begin to look lackluster. Adding drought-resistant summer blooms can make a landscape pop again and retain customer satisfaction.
Tips to Help Maintain Summer Blooms
Before you begin planting, establish a plan for care and maintenance with your customers.
- Provide extra watering, if local codes allow, when there is high heat and low precipitation.
- Water deeply to fully saturate the ground.
- Avoid watering at the highest point of the day. Timing will depend on your location, but early morning is generally a good time to water.
- Removing the wilted blooms of your flowering plants, or dead heading, is a good way to stimulate more flowers and keep the color into the fall season. Without this, landscaping will often stop flowering mid-summer.
Top Summer Blooming Plants
Black Eyed Susan
Rudbeckia, also known as Black Eyed Susans, fare very well in the heat of summer once established. They’ll work in many settings due to the wide variety of sizes and colors available. Black Eyed Susans bloom abundantly, will add color into fall, and require minimal maintenance.
Gaillardia is another variety available in many sizes and colors. These are easy to grow and can handle dry feet once established. The root system is aggressive, so be sure to plant this in the ground with well-draining soil. If potted, the blanket flower will require regular watering.
The Buddleja genus is a well-known blooming plant most commonly known as the butterfly bush. Native to thickets in China, it can handle rocky terrain. The flowers are large, fragrant, and come in multiple colors and sizes. These bushes profusely flower and attract beautiful butterflies but require steady maintenance. Old flowers remain on the branches once they’ve wilted, and this can make the next rounds of open blooms look dirty. Lightly shear the bushes after each flush of blooms. While this practice will delay the following bloom, it will keep the bush looking clean and vibrant.
Echinacea is commonly known for its immune boosting capabilities, but it also is a wonderful summer bloom option. It has one of the most diverse ranges of colors and sizes. As a meadow perennial, this plant thrives in heat and is very drought resistant once established. This is a great choice for many kinds of landscapes.
Lagerstroemia rings in the summer season with early blooms. Handling the summer temperatures well, these plants bloom voraciously, making them an excellent candidate for sprucing up a landscape. Offered in a variety of shapes, colors, and sizes, you can choose what works best for your client, whether that is a bush form or a tree. There are also dark colored options to choose that offer near-black foliage year-round depending on the customer’s desired aesthetic. Some crepe myrtles hold their leaves and blooms into the fall season.
Top left: Gaillardia, top right: Hibiscus, bottom left: Lantana, bottom right: Echinacea
Lantanas are a long bloomer naturally, and with new breeding, varieties can be grown to not cycle out of bloom, creating color all season long. A full sun plant, lantana thrives in heat and is drought resistant. Types include a range from mounding, groundcover, and shrub types. These come in a range of colors, and some are bi-colored.
Red Hot Poker
Kniphofia is known as both Red Hot Poker and Torch Lily. These plants have grass-like foliage and towering stalks with red blooms at the ends. To encourage re-blooming after the first flush of flowers, cut the flower stalks off near the base. These are a unique addition to a landscape.
While vinca is also known as periwinkle, it is not the same as the ground cover perennial that shares the same name. Native to Madagascar, these plants bloom nearly nonstop from early summer through fall. This is a great option for customers who want less maintenance as these plants are very drought tolerant and require next to no upkeep. It works in mass plantings, border areas, and containers, so this is a versatile option to offer your customers. Vinca ranks very highly in terms of color performance and ease of care.
Paniculata Hydrangeas can also be called peegee hydrangeas or hardy hydrangeas. This species is the easiest kind of hydrangea to grow as it is the hardiest and most adaptable. This is a good planting option for a customer who wants to oversee their own maintenance as the species is reliable. Hydrangeas bloom in late spring, through the summer, and hold their flowers until fall. The flowers are typically large white clusters in a cone shape but are available in round shapes also. Be sure to watch for drooping stems, as the weight of the big blooms can pull them down. Look for strong stems when selecting the plants to avoid this.
Hibiscus Moscheutos also goes by the name Rose Mallow. An eastern U.S. native, it prefers moist soils and can be grown in the cold northern regions down through the subtropics (typically zones 5-10). Rose Mallow flowers are unique because they only stay open for a day, but the flowers can be the size of dinner plates once open. Like the other summer blooms mentioned, the hibiscus loves full sun and once established can be drought resistant. Usually, these plants bloom mid-summer and range from around 2-10 feet tall. There are a variety of colors available, including new breeds with nearly black foliage for a unique contrast to the bright blooms.
SiteOne is Here to Help
There have been many advancements in growing heat resistant plants. Take advantage of people continuing to upgrade their outdoor spaces and reach out to customers for summer plant suggestions. Adding a pop of color can completely change the yard’s aesthetic.
SiteOne’s nurseries are stocked and our associates are happy to help answer any questions you may have. If there’s not a nursery in your area or you need to save time, use our Nursery Direct program to get the plants delivered directly to your jobsite.