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Phlox to Zinnia

Common Name

Height

Space

Flower Colors

Phlox

6-18"

6-8"

No Gold

Twinkle PhloxLong lasting flowers; may be bicolor. Dead head to encourage rebloom. When plants get straggly, cut back to 2-3" and new flowering shoots will develop. Prefers full sun and fertile well drained soil; tolerates poor soil. Drought resistant. Dwarf cultivars form compact mounds covered with flowers. Some cultivars have flowers with sharply-lobed petals; look like painted stars.   Use for cut flowers, edging, planters, rock gardens and window boxes. Tend to do poorly here.

Common Name

Height

Space

Flower Colors

Rudbeckia (Gloriosa Daisy)

8-36"

12-15"

Orange, Yellow

Indian Summer RudbeckiaShort lived perennial treated like an annual; may overwinter with good snow cover. Daisy-like flowers; single or double. Flower has dark cone shaped center surrounded by colorful petals; long lasting cut flowers. Cut blooms to encourage more flowering. Resistant to heat and drought; needs full sun to partial shade and well drained soil. Dwarf cultivars are available. Flowers first year if started early. Self seeds but loses colors. Use for cut flowers or edging.

Common Name

Height

Space

Flower Colors

Salpiglossis (Painted Tongue)

15-36"

12-15"

Various

Slender wiry stems with trumpet-shaped flowers; blooms have a velvety texture and delicate veining. Sticky leaf and stem surfaces trap small insects and debris. Close relative of the petunia; grows best in cool weather. Don't bloom well in hot weather. Prefers sun, fertile soil and wind protection; may need staking. Dwarf cultivars are more compact; appear to have more flowers. Don't transplant well. Seedlings grow slowly; start seeds early.  Use for background plantings and cut flowers.

Common Name

Height

Space

Flower Colors

Salvia

8-30"

12-18"

No Gold, Orange or Yellow

Sizzler Red SalviaMint family; leaves are ovalish to lance-shaped. Prefer full sun and fertile well drained soil; water in dry conditions. Start seed early; light to germinate. Seedlings develop best in cool nights. Salvia splendens-very striking; flowers attract hummingbirds. Flowers are terminal spikes; tube-shaped flowers surrounded by colorful bracts. Color fades quickly when cut. Slow to bloom; start early. Germinate best at warm temperatures. Salvia farinacea-flower stems arise from mounds of silvery foliage. Good frost and snow tolerance. May over winter with good protection. Good cut flower for fresh and dry use. Use for edging, mixed borders, planters and window boxes.

Common Name

Height

Space

Flower Colors

Scabiosa (Pincushion Flower)

8-30"

8-10"

No Gold, Orange or Yellow

Butterfly Blue ScabiosaOval or lance-shaped leaves. Rounded flower heads resembling pincushions with silvery stamens sticking out like pins; sweet fragrance. Long lasting cut flower. Prefers full sun and fertile well drained soil.

 

Common Name

Height

Space

Flower Colors

Schizanthus (Butterfly Flower)

10-24"

12"

No Blue, Gold or Orange

SchizanthusFlowers usually bicolored; heavily veined with gold. Color patterns like an orchid; thus the common name of Poor Man's Orchid. Like full to partial sun, moist soil and cool temperatures, especially at night. Start very early for summer bloom; seedlings are sensitive to high temperatures.  Use for cut flowers, hanging baskets, planters and window boxes.
 

Common Name

Height

Space

Flower Colors

Shirley Poppy

18-30"

6-12"

No Blue, Gold or Yellow

Shirley PoppyPapaver rhoeas has grayish green foliage on branched and wiry stems; single or double flowers on long stems. Nodding when in bud, but straightens as flower opens; white based petals on bloom. Milky sap exudes if cut or broken. Burn cut stem to keep cut flower longer. Does best in full sun and cool weather; dislikes hot humid weather. Hard to transplant; direct seed in late fall or early spring.   Use for cut or dried flowers.

Common Name

Height

Space

Flower Colors

Snapdragon

4-36"

6-12"

No Blue

Rocket SnapdragonsAntirrhinum majus  is an erect branched plant with lance-shaped leaves. Flower stalks bloom from the base upward; may be faintly fragrant. Plant may produce 7-8 flower spikes per season; flowers until killed by hard frost. Pinch back to develop a bushier plant and more flower stalks; removing old flower spikes and seed pods will prolong bloom period. Prefer full to partial sun and cool temperatures. Sow seeds early; can be propagated by cuttings.  Use for background plantings, cut flowers, edging, mixed borders, rock gardens and window boxes.

Common Name

Height

Space

Flower Colors

Statice

12-30"

10-15"

Various

Dark Blue Fortress StaticeLimonium sinuatum has terminal compact clusters of paper textured flowers on many branched tall stems; low growing rosette of leaves. Transplant when small. Cut when flowers are fully expanded; hang upside down in a shady area until totally dry. Prefer full sun and fairly dry well drained soil.  Use for cut flowers, dried flowers and in mixed borders.
 

Common Name

Height

Space

Flower Colors

Stocks

12-24"

8-10"

No Gold or Orange

Seven-week Trisomic StockMatthiola incana has stems covered with single or double flowers; doubles are more colorful with denser flower spikes. Fragrant especially in the evening; scent can be over powering in a confined space. Requires cool temperatures to set buds; dislikes hot weather. Blooms even after frost. Likes full to partial sun, fertile soil, cool temperatures and abundant moisture; plant early to get bloom before hot weather.  Use for cut or dried flowers.

Common Name

Height

Space

Flower Colors

Strawflowers

12-40"

10-12"

No Blue

Bright Bikini StrawflowerHelichrysum spp has daisy-like flowers with stiff, chaff-like, colorful bracts; most brilliant of all flowers used for drying. Prefers full sun, infertile, well drained soil and warm growing conditions. For drying, harvest before the center petals open; remove leaves and hang upside down in dry shady site. Stems become very brittle once dried; reinforce with wire.  Use for cut or dried flowers.
 

Common Name

Height

Space

Flower Colors

Sweet Peas

8-30"/vine

6-12"

No Gold or Yellow

Sweet PeasLathyrus sp. have bush and vining types; may climb to 10'. Use tendrils to climb but need supports. Non climbing types are mound shaped. Pea-like showy flowers; most are riffled or have wavy petals; some are bicolors. Flowers best with cool nights; fragrant blooms. Pick flowers to extend the bloom season. Pinch plants to encourage branching; mulching is also recommended. Prefers full to partial sun, cool moist weather and adequate moisture; tolerates alkaline soil. Sow in late fall or early spring; plant deep. Soak seed over night before planting. Germinate best in cool soil; rotate site to prevent damping off. Start in individual pots.  Use for cut flowers, ground covers and screening.

Common Name

Height

Space

Flower Colors

Thunbergia

Vines

12"

Orange, White, Yellow

ThunbergiaTender perennial which blooms from seed first year; low twining climber with attractive arrow-shaped leaves. Individually borne flowers; most have a dark center. Need strings or netting to climb. Prefer full to part sun and fertile moist soil. Seedling growth is slow; very susceptible to frost.  Use for ground covers, hanging baskets, planters and window boxes.
 

Common Name

Height

Space

Flower Colors

Tithonia (Mexican Sunflower)

24-48"

24"

Orange, Yellow

TithoniaBroad oval, deeply lobed, or coarsely toothed leaves; large flowers usually solitary on long, hollow stems. Attract butterflies; likes full sun and warm weather. Very heat tolerant; slow to flower.  Use for background plantings and cut flowers.

 

Common Name

Height

Space

Flower Colors

Torenia (Wishbone Flower)

8-12"

6-8"

Blue, Purple, White, Yellow

Clown Mix ToreniaTrumpet-shaped, bicolored flowers. Pair of stamens in throat of flower look like a chicken's wishbone. Snapdragon family. Better flower color with light afternoon shade. Prefers full to part sun, cool moist soil and cool nights; dislikes hot dry conditions. Does poorly outside; hard to transplant. Use for hanging baskets and planters.
 

Common Name

Height

Space

Flower Colors

Verbena

6-16"

8-10"

No Gold, Orange, Yellow

Amour Pink VerbenaUpright mound shaped and spreading forms; flat clusters of fragrant blooms. Many flowers have contrasting white centers. Prefer full sun to partial shade and fertile well drained soil; tolerate heat and drought. Seed is hard to germinate; may be propagated by cuttings.  Use for cut flowers, edging, ground covers, hanging baskets, rock gardens and window boxes.
 

Common Name

Height

Space

Flower Colors

Vinca

6-15"

8-10"

Pink, Red, White

Little Pinkie VincaCatharanthus roseus is a bushy plant with glossy green leaves; flowers most freely in hot weather but prefers some shade. Cool temperature reduce bloom. Thrives in full sun to partial shade and well drained garden soil; heat and drought tolerant. Slow from seed; can propagate by cuttings. Good houseplant.  Use for edging, ground cover and planters.
 

Common Name

Height

Space

Flower Colors

Zinnia

5-36"

6-12"

No Blue

Peter Pan Mix ZinniasMany heights, flower forms and sizes; single or double flowers. Cultivars with multicolored or striped flowers. Stiff erect stems with short bristle hairs; leaves opposite, oval to lance-shaped usually stem clasping. Best in full sun and hot dry sites; tends to go dormant or deteriorate when temperatures cool. Susceptible to powdery mildew; avoid watering in the evening and provide good air circulation. Doesn't transplant well; quick and easy to grow. Z. augustifolia has single daisy-like flowers; shorter, bushier, and has narrow dark green leaves. Do not have to deadhead; less problem with mildew.  Use zinnias in background plantings, cut flowers, dried flowers, edging, ground covers, mixed borders and planters.


Todd Weinmann, Extension Horticulturist & Master Gardener Coordinator
Phone: (701) 241-5707
E-mail: todd.weinmann@ndsu.edu

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