Costa Farms Recommends Perennials for Summer Butterfly Gardening

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These top five perennials will add dramatic color and create a haven for butterflies, bees, and other pollinators.

Include Guara ‘Belleza Dark Pink’ in your borders or containers and butterflies will be sure to stop by.

Choose flowers with bright blooms and sweet scents to add sensory appeal to your landscape.

A perennial garden that returns with vigor every year to welcome butterflies and other pollinators is a gardener’s dream. Designing and creating a low-maintenance garden that’s filled with life and brings joy for years can be easier to add than people think.

“There are so many beautiful flowering perennials that attract pollinators to select from,” says Justin Hancock, garden expert at Costa Farms. “Choose flowers with bright blooms and sweet scents to add sensory appeal to your landscape.”

Even a small garden can make a big impact once it becomes pollinator-friendly. Hancock recommends these five top perennials to add dramatic color and create a haven for butterflies, bees, and other pollinators.

1. Echinacea ‘Cheyenne Spirit’ and ‘Pow Wow Wildberry’
Coneflower, also called Echinacea, is a favorite of butterflies and a native of North America. Loved for its nectar-rich blooms, coneflower is easy to grow and drought-resistant. Try newer award-winning varieties such as ‘Cheyenne Spirit’ and ‘Pow Wow Wildberry’. These plants generally grow three feet tall and bloom from early summer through fall. They also make excellent cut flowers.

2. Gaura ‘Belleza Dark Pink’
Include Guara ‘Belleza Dark Pink’ in your borders or containers and butterflies will be sure to stop by. This sun-loving plant is drought-tolerant and blooms all summer long. Plus, it’s also deer-resistant. Guara grows two to three feet tall and is hardy in zones 5-9. Note: Guara can be grown as an annual in colder regions.

3. Gaillardia ‘Arizona Apricot’
Award-winning ‘Arizona Apricot’ gaillardia (also called blanketflower) is another easy-care North American native that blooms nonstop from late spring to fall. Its daisy-like blooms are an ideal landing pad for hungry butterflies and other pollinators. Gaillardia grows 12 inches tall and wide and is hardy in Zones 3-9.

4. Verbena ‘Endurascape Purple’
Verbena ‘Endurascape Purple’ is sure to delight with nonstop blooms from early summer to fall. Clusters of beautiful and bright purple bring butterflies and hummingbirds to yards. It grows 12 inches tall and 24 inches across. Verbena is a sun-worshipper that excels in garden beds, window boxes, or hanging baskets. It’s deer resistant and hardy in zones 7-10.

5. Phlox paniculata
Add height, color and fragrance to your yard with tall wands of Phlox paniculata. This easy-to-care-for perennial blooms midsummer through fall in gorgeous shades of pink, red, purple, blue, or white. Plus, garden phlox is a favorite of butterflies and makes a terrific cut flower. Deer generally avoid garden phlox. This plant grows 18 inches tall and is hardy in zones 3-9.

6. Sedum ‘Autumn Fire’
Another easy-care perennial that can take heat, Sedum is the perfect addition to pollinator gardens. Varieties such as ‘Autumn Fire’ bloom from late summer to fall and have lush succulent foliage all season. Each year, sedums get bigger and better. Sedum is hardy in zones 3-8

Costa Farms is the largest producer of ornamental plants in the world. Founded in 1961 by Jose Costa, Costa Farms is a third-generation, family-owned business that globally stretches over 4,000 acres and employs nearly 5,000 people. Along with thriving indoor and bedding plant divisions, Costa Farms operates merchandising and young-plant production divisions as part of its infrastructure, with operations domestically in South and Central Florida, North Carolina and South Carolina, and abroad in the Dominican Republic and Far East.

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Stacey Pierson
@gardenmedia
since: 08/2010
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