Most homeowners look forward to the first signs of spring so they can get outside and start their gardens. At the very least, most will want to plant some flowers around the entrance to their home for a pop of welcome color after the drab shades of winter. Some people have a naturally green thumb while other unfortunate, would-be gardeners can’t seem to get anything to thrive once it’s planted. For those hopeless gardeners we’ve put together a list of easy care flowers that are almost impossible to kill, even if neglected a bit. If you don’t think you have what it takes to be a gardener, try these hardy plants!
- Cosmos are Easy Care Flowers that Bloom for Months
At the top of the chart are Cosmos. These delicate looking flowers are famous for being practically care free while blooming all summer long. Delicate, fern-like leaves and bright petals can cover your garden in color. Cosmos thrive in hot, dry weather and come in a wide variety of colors including white, pink, purple, gold and candy stripe. There are several varieties of Cosmos, ranging in height from four inches to over three feet, making them easy to stagger for a natural, meadow-like garden appearance.
- Easy Care Vinca are Small but Mighty
There are several strains of Vinca depending upon the leaves and height, but they are all hardy, ever-blooming summer flowers. The glossy, smooth leaves make an attractive ground cover, and the flat, five-petaled flowers resemble stars in shades of pink, purple, coral, red and white. The centers of the stars are usually a bright, contrasting color. They do well in almost any climate, including hot, dry, humid, cold and poor soil.
- Sunflowers Aren’t Just for Seeds
The typical image of a sunflower is the six-foot-tall variety with enormous seed heads, but you can now grow sunflowers in a wide range of sizes and far more colors than the traditional, bright yellow. You’ll find gold, peach, burgundy and even bi-colored blooms that will grow anywhere from 10” to eight feet tall. Dwarf sunflowers are great for along fences while the larger varieties will attract songbirds who love the seeds.
4. Zinnias Offer Easy Care Flowers in a Multitude of Shapes and Colors
Zinnias are one of the easiest flowers to grow and they thrive whether planted in borders, flower beds or even containers. They attract hummingbirds and butterflies and are beautiful as cut flowers because they last for at least a week after cutting. An added bonus is that when you cut them, even more flowers will bloom. They love the heat and sunshine of summer and bloom repeatedly throughout the summer and well into fall. You can grow zinnias in colors ranging from soft pinks to deep reds, oranges and creams. Some blooms have seemingly endless mounds of petals while others are flat with distinct centers of gold or cream.
5. Daffodils – An Easy Spring Flower
Daffodils have been linked to springtime for generations, and with good reason. Once the bulbs have been planted, Daffodils will rise again every spring in a profusion of cup-shaped flowers surrounded by a ring of brilliant petals. Although known for its bright yellow color, you can also get them cream, peach, gold and combos that have one color for the cup and another for the flat petals. These bloom in the spring, but the flowers last for weeks. Just plant daffodil bulbs in the fall and they’ll quickly spread every spring.
6. Phlox are Butterfly Magnets
This cheerful flower used to bloom profusely, but only for a few weeks in the spring. Recent hybrids and newer strains, however, can bloom clear through the first frost. The flowers bloom in compact clusters that resemble the flowers on Vinca, but are smaller and grouped tightly together over long, spiky leaves. Phlox flowers attract butterflies and hummingbirds but deer tend to stay away, making Phlox ideal for suburban gardens.
- Marigolds Grow Almost Anywhere
Marigolds love bright, sunny spots and they are hardy enough to withstand even the hottest temperatures. They bloom profusely from late spring to fall. Traditional marigolds can grow anywhere from three to five feet tall, but you can also get dwarf varieties for containers and window boxes. The fern-like leaves are a deep green and the blossom colors include yellow, red and gold.
- Pansies are Dainty Delights
Pansies look delicate and frail, but they stand up to sunlight and grow well as long as they are watered during stretches of drought. Gardeners love the “face” on each pansy bloom that combines an overall petal color with vivid streaks of a deeper color forming a blaze in the center of the flower. Pansies come in an astonishing palette of colors, including burgundy, reds, purples, yellows, creams, golds and peaches. Pinching off spent blooms will force even more blooms. These do best in the spring and fall, reviving quickly after any hot spell. Pansies don’t grow very tall – a foot at the most, but usually more like 6 to 8 inches.
9. Impatiens Come in Two Varieties
Impatiens are most often seen in containers and hanging baskets, but they are excellent in shady areas of your garden as well. They can easily wilt in the heat of the day, so keep them well watered. If you keep them shaded, they will proliferate and spread with mounds of amazing color. The leaves are softly rounded in a cheerful green in most varieties, although New Guinea Impatiens feature darker leaves with sharper edges. Impatiens come in a spectrum of warm shades ranging from a bright, pure white to cherry red with tints of pink, salmon, fuchsia and orange. For shady borders, nothing beats Impatiens for constant color.
10. Grandma’s Begonias are Making A Come-Back
It’s almost impossible to kill a begonia, which is what has made this plant a favorite with gardeners for generations. Your grandmother probably planted “wax begonias” in her first garden. Back then, most begonias had waxy, spade-shaped leaves and flowers clusters in either red or a orangey flowers. Today you’ll find begonias with leaves of purple, citrus green or deep green that are round, spaded or rough around the edges. Flowers come in reds, oranges, golds and peaches as well as bi-colors. They are still as durable and reliable as ever, being disease and drought resistant.
- Snapdragons Add Height to Your Garden
Snapdragons are easy to grow in even rocky soil, blooming into tall spikes of color that are perfect for bouquets. Their complex flowers grow in clusters along the top half of each spike, blazing in bright shades of yellow, red, pink and orange as well as variegated versions with multiple colors. You’ll find Snapdragons that grow anywhere from twelve inches to four feet in height depending upon the type. The intermediate height (one to two feet tall) are the hardiest and come in the deepest colors. Snapdragons are proficient bloomers in the summer and into early fall.
12. Morning Glories are Easy Care Flowers for Fences and Trellises
These charming, old-fashioned flowers sprout quickly from seed and flourish even in poor soil. To encourage sprouting, most gardeners soak the seeds in lukewarm water overnight before planting. Once they’re in the ground, just stand back and watch them grow. These are a twining vine, so plant them along a fence or trellis. The spade shaped foliage is usually a soft green. Gardeners prize morning glories for their easy growth and the vibrant blues and purples of the trumpet-shaped flowers. You can also find Morning Glories in pinks, purples and striking striped varieties.
If you aren’t sure what flowers you want to plant or need help with landscaping your home or garden, Mr. B’s Lawn Care can guide you with professional landscaping services.