quick find clear
There are hundreds of different spurges -- and most are valued by gardeners because they're drought-resistant and almost always ignored by deer and rabbits. Spurges are surefire picks for adding color to the garden. Many also turn gorgeous colors in the fall, enlivening the fall garden.
Part Sun, Sun
1 to 3 feet
1-3 feet wide
more varieties for Spurge
'Blue Haze' spurge
Euphorbia 'Blue Haze' produces eye-catching chartreuse flowers in late spring to early summer on blue-green foliage that grows 18 inches tall. Zones 7-9
Euphorbia 'Bonfire' shows off rich maroon foliage from spring to fall. In spring it also bears clusters of chartreuse flowers. It grows 1 foot tall and wide. Zones 5-9
Euphorbia polychroma develops shades of chartreuse, yellow, burgundy, red, and orange through the seasons. In fall the foliage turns brilliant red, maroon, and orange. It grows 12 to 20 inches tall. Zones 3-10
Euphorbia cyparissias grows upright, resembling a tiny spruce or cypress tree, but the plant spreads to form a bushy groundcover. It produces chartreuse bracts, which age to red. Zones 4-8
Euphorbia 'Froeup' is sometimes called Excalibur. Growing 2 to 3 feet tall, its foliage emerges with a red tint, matures to deep green, and takes on yellow tones in fall. Zones 5-8
'Glacier Blue' spurge
Euphorbia characias 'Glacier Blue' grows 2 feet tall and wide and is prized for its white-edge, gray-green foliage. The flowers, which appear in spring, are cream with green centers. Zones 7-11
Euphorbia rigida has narrow, pointed blue-green leaves and chartreuse blooms in spring. It grows 2 feet tall and wide. Zones 7-10
Euphorbia griffithii has green foliage with a purplish-red tinge; it turns orange-red in fall. It produces small yellow flowers surrounded by showy orange-red bracts on plants up to 3 feet tall. Zones 4-9
Helena's Blush spurge
Euphorbia amygdaloides 'Inneuphhel' Helena's Blush bears green foliage edged in white and pink and chartreuse-variegated bracts. It grows 20 inches tall and is often grown as an annual. Zones 6-9
Euphorbia x martinii is a shrubby plant 3 feet tall with reddish-purple leaves. It bears chartreuse bracts (petals) with small red flowers. Zones 7-10
'Lacey' cushion spurge
Euphorbia polychroma 'Lacey' is a selection with creamy-white edges on its leaves. Zones 3-10
plant Spurge with
Phlox are one of those bounteous summer flowers any large sunny flowerbed or border shouldn't be without. There are several different kinds of phlox. Garden and meadow phlox produce large panicles of fragrant flowers in a wide assortment of colors. They also add height, heft, and charm to a border. Low-growing wild Sweet William, moss pinks, and creeping phlox are effective as ground covers, at the front of the border, and as rock and wild garden plants, especially in light shade. These native gems have been hybridized extensively especially to toughen the foliage against mildew problems; many recent selections are mildew-resistant. Phlox need amply moist soil for best overall health.
This North American native plant has a home in nearly every garden with flowers that hummingbirds love. Long blooming with brilliantly colored, tubular flowers, penstemons -- ironically -- have been a staple in European gardens for decades.There are many different penstemon types. The leaves are lance-shape or oval, sometimes purple-red as in 'Husker Red'. Some Western species need outstanding drainage to dry conditions and won't thrive during wet weather. However, many, such as 'Husker Red', thrive in a wide variety of conditions. Just be sure to provide excellent drainage. Mulch in areas where a type is marginally hardy.
Bring a note of the tropics to your garden with the bold, colorful, strappy leaves of New Zealand flax. They are excellent as container plants that can be overwintered with protection, but in warm areas, they're spectacular planted directly in the ground.Flower panicles may reach 12 feet tall in some selections with red or yellow tubular flowers. Blooms only appear in mild climates, but there they attract many species of birds. If space is limited, check out dwarf forms.While New Zealand flax is a popular perennial in frost-free areas, it's becoming more and more loved in northern regions, where it's treated as an annual.