Here are some popular perennials that bring the same scorch-proof color to your garden year after year:
African lily (Agapanthus africanus, Zones 9 to 10
Bee balm (Monarda didyma, Zones 4 to 9)
Blanket flower (Gaillardia spp. Zones 3 to 8)
Blazing star (Liatris spicata, Zones 4 to 9)
Clustered bellflower (Campanula glomerata, Zones 3 to 8)
Crown imperial (Fritillaria imperalis, Zones 5 to 9)
Daylily (Hemerocallis spp., Zones 3 to 10)
Globe thistle (Echinops spp., Zones 3 to 9)
Lady’s mantle (Alchemilla mollis, Zones 4 to 7)
Lavender (Lavandula angustifolia, Zones 5 to 8)
Oriental poppy (Papaver orientale, Zones 4 to 9)
Purple coneflower (Echinacea purpurea, Zones 3 to 9)
Purple sage (Salvia officinalis, Zones 5 to 8)
Snow in summer (Cerastium tomentosum, Zones 3 to 7)
Yarrow (Achillea spp., Zones 3 to 9)
Yucca (Yucca filamentosa, Zones 4 to 11)
White gaura (Gaura lindheimeri, Zones 6 to 9)
How to keep your perennials healthy in the heat
To keep your perennials thriving in hot weather, give a little extra attention to soil preparation and plant placement:
- Amend soil with organic material such as well-rotted manure, leaf mold, or compost. Spread 2 to 3 inches of material over the bed and work it 12 inches into the soil. Roots must be encouraged to go deep to support the plants in the hot dry days they’ll face.
- Mulch and water carefully. Hot-weather plants take the heat, but many are challenged by humidity or excess moisture on their crowns or leaves. Water in the morning to give moisture time to evaporate from the foliage. Pull mulch back from the crowns and stems to prevent disease. Better yet, use drip irrigation to water only the plants’ root zones, and mulch with fast-draining pebbles or gravel to keep foliage out of wet conditions.
- Group perennials in mass plantings against evergreen shrub borders. Include varieties that bloom at various times, especially in the late summer and fall, when the color from garden annuals is fading.