Chamomile, Matricaria chamomilla

With attractive ferny foliage and eye-catching blooms, chamomile can be a nice addition to the ornamental garden or herb garden. This Eurasian annual is easily grown from seed for its yellow and white daisy flowers that are harvested to make chamomile tea. Learn more about Matricaria chamomilla in this article…

Gloriosa lily, Gloriosa superba

The exotic flowers of gloriosa lily, with their amazing color and an unusual shape, make a flamboyant statement in the garden or in a container on a patio.  This twining perennial vine with tendrils coming from the tips of the leaves grows from a tuberous rhizome to produce the striking flowers in summer and fall. Learn more about this climber native to Africa and Asia in this article…

Bat-faced cuphea, Cuphea llavea

At this time of year Halloween-themes dominate, with pumpkins, ghosts and bats abounding, so in that spirit here’s a Halloween-themed flower: bat-faced cuphea. The name comes from the resemblance of the unique flowers to a little bat face when viewed from the right angle. Learn more about this Mexican native which is often offered as an annual in cool climates…

Spider flower, Cleome hassleriana

Spider flower is fast growing, self-seeding annual with delicate and airy flowers in showy, exotic looking heads of pink, white or purple. These eye-catching plants provide a splash of color from summer through frost when planted in mass or as a backdrop for shorter companions in the annual or mixed garden. Learn more about this cottage garden favorite in this article…

Cardinal Climber, Ipomoea sloteri

Looking for a vigorous annual vine to quickly cover a trellis, fence or arbor? Cardinal climber offers attractive, ferny foliage and bright red flowers later in the season which are very attractive to hummingbirds. Learn more about this heirloom ornamental with few pests and little maintenance requirements in this article…

Lemon-scented Plants

If you want to add some lemon zest to your garden, but can’t grow a lemon tree, consider trying some lemon-scented herbs or other plants. Many different plants contain the same chemical compounds that give lemons their distinctive fragrance. This article covers a collection of plants that have scents suggesting lemons.

Mealycup sage, Salvia farinacea

Add some blue to any garden with the herbaceous perennial mealycup sage grown as an annual.  The shrubby upright clumps produce tall, sturdy flower stems above the foliage, with dense whorls of dark blue, light blue, purple, or white flowers. Learn more about these tough, heat-tolerant plants that bloom from early summer to frost…

Kahili Ginger, Hedychium gardnerianum

If you want a glamorous and spectacular plant to bring an exotic look to your garden, and sweetly fragrant flowers, try growing kahili ginger. This showy subtropical plant is an attractive foliage plant even when it doesn’t have its terminal spikes of striking yellow and red fragrant flowers. To learn more about Hedychium gardnerianum, read this article…

Honeybush, Melianthus major

With bold-textured, silvery blue foliage, honeybush (Melianthus major) makes a spectacular specimen plant in containers or in the border. This South African native is evergreen only in zones 9 and 10, but its rapid growth means it can be used as a seasonal ornamental to provide a lush, exotic look in cooler climates. Learn more about honeybush in this article…

Flowering Maple, Abutilon spp.

Flowering maples aren’t real maples, but they have palmate leaves that look similar to that tree’s leaves, and much more spectacular flowers than true maples have. Also commonly referred to by just the genus name Abutilon, these tender sub-shrubs can be used as seasonal accent plants or grown indoors to bloom year-round. For more about flowering maples read this article…

Balloon Plant, Gomphocarpus physocarpus

Balloon plant is one of many common names for an African milkweed that develops showy, hairy, inflated seed pods that are a real conversation piece. Grown as an annual in our climate, this tender perennial can be a showpiece in the garden or interesting addition to floral arrangements. To learn more about Gomphocarpus physocarpus, read this article…

Pennisetum ‘Fireworks’

July brings out the fireworks, but if you’d rather have visual explosions in the garden than pyrotechnics in the sky, consider the annual purple fountain grass cultivar ‘Fireworks’. This ornamental grass offers pink variegated foliage in an arching form that provides great contrast in color and form. Learn more about ‘Fireworks’ grass in this article…

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