Summer phlox is a widely adapted perennial, hardy from Minneapolis to the Gulf Coast. If you've grown phlox before, however, you know that its nemesis is powdery mildew, a fungus that leaves the plants looking bare-legged and bedraggled. Certain phlox varieties are more resistant to the disease than others, and a few years ago we set out to find them. We asked phlox experts and ordinary gardeners from across the country to recommend their favorites.
Phlox adds loads of color to perennial borders at an otherwise lean time of year. It may not be the easiest perennial to grow, but it's among the most gratifying.
Phlox lifts your garden out of the summer doldrums on a wave of jewel-box colors and soft perfume. Any phlox is beautiful, but the varieties that follow are also long-blooming and healthy. Clearly, they're the best.
Snip a few stems of phlox, plunk them in an upright vase, and you have a bouquet more bountiful than anything from a florist's shop. Now bury your nose in the blossoms for a whiff of heaven.
Even the mildew-resistant varieties of phlox aren't mildew-proof. Take these steps to keep your phlox healthy:
Natascha's pink-and-white pinwheels spin from June until fall.
Miss Lingard bears slender flower heads of the crispest white.
Katherine radiates soft color from the centers of large florets.
Laura takes the prize as the longest-blooming phlox in our Test Garden.