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If you have a hot, baked spot, lantana is your answer. This hardworking plant not only thrives with little moisture and in full, unyielding sun, it does so with ease. In fact, lantana is a flower that seems to have it all: It produces an abundance of brightly colored flowers all summer and fall, and it's a magnet for butterflies (hummingbirds like it, too). It's easy to grow and a great choice for containers. Plus, if you have a sunny spot indoors, you can grow it as a charming indoor plant. In frost-free climates (Zones 9-11), it's a great perennial groundcover, as well.
Under 6 inches to 8 feet
To 4 feet wide
more varieties for Lantana
'Bandana Cherry' lantana
Lantana 'Bandana Cherry' offers rich yellow, orange, and cherry-red blooms in large heads.
'Bandana Pink' lantana
Lantana 'Bandana Pink' offers large heads of pink-blushed blooms that mature to rich pink.
Lantana 'Irene' bears bright yellow, pink, and red blooms in large clusters on a spreading plant.
'Landmark Pink Dawn' lantana
Lantana 'Landmark Pink Dawn' offers creamy yellow flowers that mature to soft pink.
'Lucky Peach' lantana
Lantana 'Lucky Peach' offers heads of orange-peach flowers that mature to peachy-pink on compact plants.
'Lucky Pot of Gold' lantana
Lantana 'Lucky Pot of Gold' offers heads of rich yellow blooms on compact plants.
'Luscious Citrus Blend' lantana
Lantana 'Luscious Citrus Blend' is a heat-loving selection with vibrant red, orange, and yellow flowers on a mounding plant that grows to 3 feet tall and wide.
'Luscious Grape' lantana
Lantana 'Luscious Grape' displays clusters of lavender-purple flowers on a vigorous, floriferous plant. It grows 16 inches tall and 36 inches wide.
'Patriot Firewagon' lantana
Lantana 'Patriot Firewagon' offers clusters of yellow flowers that turn bright yellow and finally red-orange.
Lantana montevidensis is a wild form with lavender-purple flowers on a plant that can reach 3 feet tall and 4 feet wide.
Lantana 'Samantha' has yellow flowers and golden-variegated foliage.
plant Lantana with
Angelonia is also called summer snapdragon, and once you get a good look at it, you'll know why. It has salvia-like flower spires that reach a foot or 2 high, but they're studded with fascinating snapdragon-like flowers with beautiful colorations in purple, white, or pink. It's the perfect plant for adding bright color to hot, sunny spaces. This tough plant blooms all summer long with spirelike spikes of blooms. While all varieties are beautiful, keep an eye out for the sweetly scented selections. While most gardeners treat angelonia as an annual, it is a tough perennial in Zones 9-10. Or, if you have a bright, sunny spot indoors, you can even keep it flowering all winter.
Pentas is one of the best butterfly-attracting plants around. It blooms all summer long, even during the hottest weather, with large clusters of starry blooms that attract butterflies by the dozens as well as hummingbirds. The plant grows well in containers and in the ground -- and it can even make a good houseplant if you have enough light. It does best in full sun and moist, well-drained soil. Pentas is grown as an annual in most parts of the country, but it's hardy in Zones 10-11. Plant it outdoors after all danger of frost has passed.
There are few gardens that don't have at least one salvia growing in them. Whether you have sun or shade, a dry garden or lots of rainfall, there's an annual salvia that you'll find indispensable. All attract hummingbirds, especially the red ones, and are great picks for hot, dry sites where you want tons of color all season. Most salvias don't like cool weather, so plant them outdoors after all danger of frost has passed.