Top Plant Picks for Late-Summer Color

Keep the color coming on strong through the end of the growing season with these easy-care, reliable annuals and perennials.

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  • 1 of 11

    Bee Balm

    Properly deadhead this native perennial and enjoy pyrotechnic blooms all summer. The fireworklike flowers draw the eye through the garden and lure butterflies and hummingbirds.

    Zones: 3-9
    Size: 1-4 feet tall; up to 2 feet tall

  • 2 of 11

    Pink-and-White Celosia

    This sun-loving, old-fashioned annual produces a profusion of 4- to 5-inch feathery plumes from summer into fall. Start seeds indoors five weeks before last frost.

    Size: 1-4 feet tall; 6-18 inches wide

  • 3 of 11

    Pincushion Flower

    This robust, rapidly growing, sun-loving perennial produces blue, pink, or violet blooms on erect gray-green stems from midsummer to fall.

    Zones: 3-8
    Size: 12-15 inches tall; 12 inches wide

  • 4 of 11

    Allium

    Deer-resistant, summer-blooming bulbs show off purple globelike blossoms. Look for late-blooming varieties such as Allium 'Millennium' (shown) and Allium tuberosum.

    Zones: 4-9
    Size: 18-36 inches tall; 12-18 inches wide.

  • 5 of 11

    Spider Flower

    Spider flower or cleome stands stately with eye-catching, loose ball-shape clusters of flowers that bloom from summer to fall.

    Size: 2-6 feet tall; 1 to 2 feet wide

  • 6 of 11

    Lacecap Hydrangea

    The graceful flattop flower clusters of a reblooming, lacecap hydrangea yield well in sun- to part-shade-loving gardens showcasing their white, pink, or blue flowers all through summer.

    Zones: 5-9
    Size: 3-5 feet tall and wide

  • 7 of 11

    Threadleaf Coreopsis

    This clump-forming perennial produces airy stems of yellow daisylike blooms spring through summer. With a moderate growth rate, it shines in a sunny border.

    Zone: 3-9
    Size: 1-3 feet tall and wide

  • 8 of 11

    Cupid's Dart

    Large dark-center blue, violet, or white blooms rise on sturdy stems with heart-shape leaves. A hardy perennial, these plants bloom from summer until fall in sunny sites with well-draining soil.

    Zones: 4-9
    Size: 18-24 inches tall

  • 9 of 11

    Rose Mallow

    This quick-growing, shrublike annual produces exotic summer blossoms in pink, white, or rose-color and will reseed in the right conditions. Rose mallow prefers sun to part sun in average soil.

    Size: 3-5 feet tall; 2-3 feet wide

  • 10 of 11

    Zinnia

    The more you cut, the more it blooms! Plant this annual in the sun for continual blooms form summer till fall.

    Size: 24-30 inches tall; 12-18 inches wide.

  • Next Slideshow The Best Perennials for Shade

    The Best Perennials for Shade

    Brighten up sheltered spots in your landscape with these easy-to-grow shade plants that come back year after year.
    Begin Slideshow »
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