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Showy Summer Perennials

We love perennials that come back each year in the garden. Perennials are considered to be ornamental plants that reappear for more than one growing season. This does not mean they live forever, but they do offer a repeat performance for many seasons! The term perennial is generally reserved for plants with showy flowers, excluding ornamental grasses, trees, shrubs and other woody stemmed plants. Perennials are great planted in the landscape or in containers. With so many varieties to choose from, there is one that is perfectly suited for your garden. Here's our top summer perennials...


  • Mexican Petunia (Ruellia Purple Showers) is a long blooming perennial that thrives in hot, sunny conditions. Deep green foliage with hints of burgundy provide the perfect backdrop for the scores of vibrant blue-purple flowers. Works well in combination plantings and in beds.
  • Sedum Angelina is a drought tolerant, moderate-growing groundcover with fleshy green/yellow leaves in the spring and summer and fiery orange/red foliage in the fall and winter. Angelina makes an excellent groundcover and looks great as a spiller plant in container combinations.
  • Stella D'Oro Daylilies boasts fragrant, ruffled, buttercup-yellow flowers with an apricot throat. It's blooms measure about 2-½ inches across. Stella loves the heat and thrives in containers on patios or planted together in large numbers. Attracts hummingbirds and butterflies.
  • Miss Huff Lantana puts on a colorful show with vibrant yellow, pink & orange blooms. You simply can't beat lantana for summer-long blooms and heat tolerance. This easy to grow perennial attracts butterflies too. We recommend putting this in the ground and reserving 8-10 inches for it to grow.


  • Autumn Ferns are a bold and beautiful choice for shady borders and woodland gardens. Thse dwarf-growing ferns with young papery fronds display coppery-red color, maturing to deep green.
  • Hostas are hardy, easy-to-grow and care for and aren't troubled by pests. Leaf colors come in green, gold and blue to variegated and sizes range from miniature to colossal. Smaller varieties (up to 12 inches tall) make good edgers along paths or in beds; medium varieties are excellent ground-covers; and large hostas are terrific in the background or as dramatic accent plants.

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Plant of the Week: Orange Marmalade Crossandra

Sometimes called firecracker flower, this tropical variety puts on quite a show, featuring large clusters of dazzling, frilly orange flowers that pop against glossy dark green foliage. This flowering perennial is easy to grow, loves heat and humidity, and does well in full sun to partial shade. Enjoy blooms late spring through early fall and typically reaching a height and spread of 1-3 feet. Orange Marmalade is perfect for brightening borders, annual and perennial beds and looks fantastic in outdoor containers. For a real tropical look, combine with ferns, hostas, impatiens and philodendrons. The dwarf species are slower growing, making wonderful flowering houseplants, which will bloom on and off all year long provided it gets ample light. As an indoor plant, be sure to mist the leaves regularly. Whether indoors or out, Crossandra will make a beautiful addition to your landscape and home.

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Plant of the Week: Fireworks Pennisetum

A fiery show of color! An explosion of color, this upright, annual grass features variegated stripes of white, green, burgundy and hot pink blades. Fireworks produces red-burgundy foxtail plumes from mid-summer to early fall. It is the first variegated purple fountain grass that grows as a thick clump that can reach 2-4 feet tall and 1-3 feet wide. It is a great accent plant in the landscape or in containers or group en mass for a stunning display of color.

Fireworks flourishes in full to partial sunlight in average well-drained soils. It establishes rapidly and tolerates short summer dry spells. The vibrant color will intensify in the early autumn cooler days. Fireworks fountain grass is relatively disease and pest free and is deer resistant.

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