Annuals You'll Love
Petunias are one of the most popular flowering annuals for sun. They are vigorous plants that bloom heavily, making them ideal for beginning gardeners.
Learn more about growing petunias.
Verbenas are sun-lovers with long-lasting blooms in a variety of colors. Their trailing habit and large flower clusters make them a great choice for a colorful groundcover or as a spiller in a container. They have been rated by Rutgers as seldom severely damaged by deer.
Superbena Royale® Peachy Keen starts blooming early in the season, is heat tolerant and doesn’t need deadheading.
These beauties look like small petunias. They like sun and will bloom until the first hard frost. Calibrachoa are best suited for growing in containers or raised beds because they require good drainage.
Superbells® Lemon Slice® has a striking pinwheel pattern of yellow and white.
Most common in shades of red, pink or white, geraniums grow best in full sun. They make excellent bedding or container plants that can handle heat and drought, but will require deadheading for continued bloom.
Boldly® Dark Red has a mounded habit with deep red flowers and has been named a Top Performer by Oklahoma State University Botanical Gardens, Michigan State University and Erie Basin Marina.
Learn more about growing geraniums.
Available in shades of orange and yellow, marigolds will bloom from late spring until fall if planted in full sun and well-draining soil. Marigolds make good cut flowers and have a scent that’s been known to repel bothersome insects.
‘First Lady’ grows up to 20 inches tall and has large flowers that are 3-1/2 inches across.
Learn more about growing marigolds.
Not to be confused with the invasive vines, annual vinca is a sun-loving plant that is ideal for use as ground cover, bedding, edging or in containers. Its phlox-like flowers come in shades of pink, red, purple or white.
Heat tolerant Cora® Mix combines multiple colors for a unique look.
This fragrant, low-growing annual thrives in hot or cold weather. It forms a delicate carpet of tiny flowers perfect for the front of a landscape bed or as a filler in hanging baskets and containers.
Snow Princess® has small white blooms that attract bees and butterflies. It was named a Top Performer by Longwood Gardens and various universities.
If you’re looking for a blue flower, this is an excellent choice. It will tolerate light shade and deer usually leave it alone. Use flossflower in beds, borders, mass plantings, containers and more.
Artist® Blue is a hybrid that doesn’t require deadheading and will bloom through the summer in hot climates.
ANGELONIA (SUMMER SNAPDRAGON)
An upright annual featuring spires of flowers up to two feet tall in blue, pink, purple, red or white. Angelonia is a sun and heat-loving plant that makes a good thriller in containers or a colorful addition to landscape plantings.
Angelface® White will bloom all season without deadheading and is a great long lasting cut flower.
If you’re looking to add a bit of seasonal color in the shade, impatiens are the answer. Provide plenty of water and they’ll bloom continuously.
Make sure to get a type that is resistant to downy mildew, like SunPatiens® Compact Blush Pink.
SWEET POTATO VINE
This adaptable vine is actually a tender perennial, commonly grown as an annual. It can be grown in either sunny or shady spots. Prized for its striking foliage and vigor, it makes a good groundcover or spiller in containers.
‘Sweet Caroline Light Green’ has chartreuse leaves that brighten up the garden.
A standby for shade gardens, coleus fills in quickly when watered and fertilized regularly. They are well suited for garden beds and containers, plus they’re adaptable as a houseplant if brought in before the first frost.
Look for coleus that bloom late in the season or not at all, like ColorBlaze® Dipt in Wine, so you won’t have to pinch blooms.
Learn more about growing coleus.