Top 10 Annuals for Texas

  • Bluebonnet
    Bluebonnet
    This popular low maintenance winter annual is now available in white and pink in addition to the classic blue.
  • Globe Amerath
    Globe Amerath
    Are versatile, often overlooked summer annuals that thrive in the Texas heat. Varieties range in size from 8 inches to 48 inches, and vary in color from whites, to pinks, to lavenders, to dark, rich purples.
  • Cora Vinca
    Cora Vinca
    They are heat and humidity tolerant and deer resistant. They are available in a wide array of colors with either upright or trailing habits and flower throughout the summer with some of the largest flowers in the genus.
  • Mandevilla
    Mandevilla
    These compact plants grow best in patio containers, and can be grown alone or mixed with other annuals wherever a splash of color is needed. They tolerate summer heat, but would benefit from some afternoon shade.
  • Petunia
    Petunia
    3 types of petunia made the list, however one can plant all 3 and create a color array of flowers. Laurel Bush petunia, Cherry and Silver petunias.
  • Angelonia-Angustifolia
    Angelonia
    Vibrant, prolific flowers on a compact plant that thrives in heat and humidity. Often called Summer Snapdragon, providing an extended season of color in borders or containers. Deer and rabbit resistant.
  • Texas-sage
    Texas Sage
    This upright tender perennial provides rich color for annual bedding schemes where it is not hardy. Its deep red flowers are borne on 2- to 2.5- foot, open spikes from summer to autumn. Plants grow to about a foot wide and bear hairy, oval to heart-shaped leaves.
  • Mexican feather grass
    Mexican feather grass
    It is native in North America only to mountains in west Texas and adjacent New Mexico south to central Mexico, but it has become widely used throughout hospitable areas of the US and elsewhere. Given the right conditions - well-drained soil, the right amount of water, and adequate sunlight - this grass can even become invasive outside of its native range.
  • 10 best annuals
    Caladium
    The brilliant foliage of this plant is often translucent, therefore light up your garden. These have brightened shady spots without producing flowers. Caladium has leaves shaped like hearts, arrows, or lances in color combinations of red, pink, rose, white, and green.

Annuals are a common solution for many gardeners that need flowers that are a quick growing and easy to fill solution for flowerbeds.  A good mix of annual plants can offer vibrant colors for your garden. There are many options to choose from to plant in your garden, therefore it may be not a simple task choosing the right annuals for particular sun/shade situations. This article for the top 10 annuals for Texas, has only a few of the top plants grown in Texas. Click the link for a full list of recommended plants by Texas A&M’s Superstar website.

Full Sun

Since Texas is one the hottest states and has sunshine for most of the year, one can find a huge variety of annuals that thrive in full sun. From flowering annuals to decorative shrubs and grasses, as well as large bushes. Below are five examples of full sun annuals.

  1. Angelonia is a spreading annual with upright flower spikes that resemble miniature snapdragons. Flower colors available include white, pink, purple, lavender and lavender pink. Angelonia can be used as a border planting, a ground cover or as a trailing plant for mixed containers.
  2. Bluebonnet: This popular low maintenance winter annual is now available in white and pink in addition to the classic blue.
  3. Globe Amaranth are versatile, often overlooked summer annuals that thrive in the Texas heat. Varieties range in size from 8 inches to 48 inches, and vary in color from whites, to pinks, to lavenders, to dark, rich purples.
  4. Petunias: 3 types of petunia made the list, however one can plant all 3 and create a color array of flowers. Laurel Bush petunia, Cherry and Silver petunias.
  5. Zinnias produce disease resistant mounds of color that last until frost when planted in late summer. All have vibrant colors with the cool nights of fall on sturdy compact plants.

Partial Sun / Shade

Texas summers are seemingly endless, and having shade provides relief from the sun and heat. It is nice to have a variety if annuals that thrive in shade as well as the sun. It is nice to have a shade garden that goes beyond green grass. Check out the these five partial shade annuals below:

  1. Texas Sage: This upright tender perennial provides rich color for annual bedding schemes where it is not hardy. Its deep red flowers are borne on 2- to 2.5- foot, open spikes from summer to autumn. Plants grow to about a foot wide and bear hairy, oval to heart-shaped leaves.
  2. Rio Series Mandevilla: These compact plants grow best in patio containers, and can be grown alone or mixed with other annuals wherever a splash of color is needed. They tolerate summer heat, but would benefit from some afternoon shade.
  3. caladiumCora Vinca: They are heat and humidity tolerant and deer resistant. They are available in a wide array of colors with either upright or trailing habits and flower throughout the summer with some of the largest flowers in the genus.
  4. Mexican Feather Grass: It is native in North America only to mountains in west Texas and adjacent New Mexico south to central Mexico, but it has become widely used throughout hospitable areas of the US and elsewhere. Given the right conditions – well-drained soil, the right amount of water, and adequate sunlight – this grass can even become invasive outside of its native range.
  5. Caladium The brilliant foliage of this plant is often translucent, therefore light up your garden. These have brightened shady spots without producing flowers. Caladium has leaves shaped like hearts, arrows, or lances in color combinations of red, pink, rose, white, and green.

Planting Annuals

When planting the top 10 annuals for Texas, carefully prepare your soil with will fertilizer. Proper fertilization helps get your annuals off to a good start and keep them growing well all season. Digging out any weeds, and adding a 3-inch layer of compost or other organic amendment will benefit your annuals growth.

You can start annuals from seeds or directly in the garden. You can also purchase plants in flats, cell-packs, peat pots, or gallon containers to save time. After planting, water the bed thoroughly. Seedlings or transplants may need water once a day in warm weather. Once they become established, you can gradually reduce watering.

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