Some Like It Hot: Heat-Tolerant Plants
It’s no secret that our weather is getting drier and our summers are getting hotter. By selecting plants for our garden that thrive in the heat, we’re not only taking pressure off watering needs but ourselves too! Many of the following plants are attractive to pollinators, so providing them a strong food source during the hotter months too.
The growing interest in the use of canna lilies is phenomenal. These beautiful foliage plants are true sun lovers. Canna lilies will really begin to perform when serious summer temperatures hit and other parts of your garden might be losing their enthusiasm. Although there have been some beautifully coloured foliage varieties over the years, there’s not been much new lately. Instead, the focus has been on shorter more compact varieties that flower earlier and are well suited for containers and today’s small space beds. Whatever variety fits your home and garden, you can be assured that a canna lily will provide an elegant and durable display well into fall.
Dahlias are true summer garden heroes coming in a wide range of impressive sizes, colours and flower forms. They are showstoppers that love the summer heat and will continue to impress well into fall.
Lantanas have come from complete obscurity to becoming a mainstay in our gardens. The many new short varieties (30-40cm), like the ‘Luscious Series’, come in a range of colours, but the warm orange and yellow combo is quite popular. They are great in hanging baskets and containers but are also quite at home in garden beds. These new varieties don’t shatter nearly as much as the older forms, and they bloom well into fall.
The number of new rudbeckia varieties is downright mind-boggling. Their weather tolerant, non-stop blooms provide fresh colour and add a summer richness to your garden that few others can. The newer varieties are shorter, more compact and bloom their little hearts out. While we have some annual varieties available now, our crops will be coming later in July to help bridge the summer/fall garden gap. Classics like R. ‘Early Bird Gold’ and the reliable ‘Goldsturm’ are still two of the best perennial types, and they are available now.
Blue is a great colour for summer, giving cool contrast to the heat. Lucky for us, annual salvias have really expanded their offering of blue hues. There are several varieties now available.
Petunias are the reigning queens of hot vibrant colour and today there are many incredible shades and blends to fit any sunny décor. Try the ‘Confetti’ combinations for sophisticated colour, or ‘Waves’ to create an eye-catching “pop” in your garden.
These are just a few seasonal beauties that can be enjoyed without fear of sunstroke or watering restrictions, and they would be a welcome addition to summer containers and larger gardens. Now is the time to get them growing and well-established before the temperatures really rise, so be sure to add them to your summer shopping list today!