I love color in the garden. My garden is full of flowering shrubs and perennials. I am blessed to live in an area where it is possible to have flowers in my garden 12 months of the year. My favorite way to accomplish this is to include plants that flower most, if not all year long.
Today, I would like to share with you some of my favorites….
Full of flowering, Angelita Daisy (Tetraneuris acaulis) Flowers year-long with heaviest bloom occurring in spring and fall.
Red Fairy Duster (Calliandra californica) This shrub has beautiful flowers 12 months of the year. Blooming does slow down in winter, but flowers are still present.
Pink Bower Vine (Pandorea jasminoides) Two of these vines grace the front entry to my house. They produce flowers all year, but do slow during the hot summer months.
‘Blue Bells’ (Eremophila hygrophana) Resembles Texas sage, yet stays compact at 3 feet tall and wide. Purple flowers are produced all 12 months of the year.
Baja Ruellia (Ruellia peninsularis) One of my absolute favorite shrubs. Purple flowers are present all year, but blooming slows down in winter.
Cape Honeysuckle (Tecomaria capensis) Reliable bloomer throughout the year. Hummingbirds flock to the beautiful orange flowers. Winter temperatures slow down blooming.
Mexican Bird-of-Paradise (Caesalpinia mexicana) This versatile shrub can be trained as a small tree. I have 4 in my landscape. Yellow flowers are produced off and on all year.
Purple Trailing Lantana (Lantana montevidensis) In a protected area (under an overhang or underneath a tree), this groundcover can bloom all year long. The lantana pictured above, was located underneath an overhang which is why is still looked wonderful in January when I took this photo.
I live and work in zone 9a and so the plants bloom times are affected by our highest and lowest temperatures. As a result, many of the plants that do flower all year long will slow down in the winter and fewer blooms will be produced. But, in my experience, there are still flowers even in January.
Plants such as the lantana and cape honeysuckle will produce more blooms in the cold winter months if planted in protected area. Examples of protected areas are up against a house, underneath the eaves or underneath a tree. I have a bougainvillea that has stayed green all winter and still has flowers on it because it is located underneath a tree.
I hope you will try some of my favorite flowering plants. For those of you who live in different climates, look for plants that will provide you with color for as long as possible. If you cannot have blooming flowers year-long, then try incorporating plants with beautiful foliage and textures so that there is always something beautiful to see in your garden every single month of the year.
**For more suggestions for colorful plants for your arid garden, I recommend Arizona Gardener’s Guide, which lists hundreds of trees, shrubs and perennials that add beauty while thriving in our often challenging climate.