turn up the heat: hot-colored annuals slideshow

‘AND IT BURNS, BURNS, BURNS,’ as the song ‘Ring of Fire’ reminded us, which just about sums up what the summer sun has in mind–and also the color palette I semi-consciously chose for my annual pots this year. Though I have no sexy “after” shots yet to share of them all grown in, I thought I’d show you the ingredients I’m starting with as spring turns to summer, and ask the question: What’s cooking in your pots? A slideshow (including Anagallis ‘Wildcat Mandarin,’ above) and hopefully some discussion to follow.

Click on the first thumbnail to start the slideshow, then toggle from image to image using the arrows beside each caption. Enjoy!

If you like begonias, by the way, some past posts have profiled my favorites:

  1. Oh, what a beautiful slideshow, Margaret! I really like your nice pics. In particular I like your picture of the zinnias on slide five.

    Thanks again for brightening up my day with your flowers! :-)


    1. Margaret says:

      Welcome, Anette, and glad you like. I suddenly looked around and thought, wow, I’ve really got a theme going…mostly oragne…so it was fun to put them all together. Hope to see you again soon.

  2. Pru says:

    These are great Margaret. Our garden is full of petunias, lobelia (yet to open) and zinnias. Mum went a bit mad growing the petunias but now that they are starting to bloom they are really brightening everything up.

  3. Stephanie Spinner says:

    Love the anagallis! Thought my need for a garden patch of all-orange flowers was a LITTLE weird, but now I feel vindicated! Orange geum and orange gazanias doing nicely. Waiting to see if the tiny Oranges ‘n Lemons rose I planted this spring will decide to flower…Wonderful how many orange tulips there are, isn’t it?

  4. Matriarchy says:

    I have been a fan of “Profusion” zinnias for a couple of years now. Try the Apricot, as well as as the Orange – they seem to glow at dusk.

  5. terryk says:

    Great choices! I am not an orange person but these could make me change my mind, especially the anagallis and the calibrachoa.

  6. Alejandro says:

    Great pics and great plants! I’ve been able to overwinter my begonias quite easily (bonfire by keeping just the tuber, red wing with a tiny cutting in a pot -it also comes true from seed-) and they say that for lantanas too you can just keep the dormant roots in a pot, just as you do with your scented geraniums.
    Looking at your color scheme let me just ask you, where’s your tithonia?

  7. Jayne says:

    I am a fan of orange. Love your photos! Love your pots!
    I have been on the hunt for lobelia’ hot arctic’, – nice long branchy stems.
    I put some lantana in my window boxes this year – found a great one that starts out orange and yellow and hot pink, but as it matures it turns solid hot pink. In the pots with my purple leaved cannas, I didnt need to add annuals because a bright red salvia re-seeded in the over wintered pots !! My cuttings of coleus that were taken last Fall are making a nice show – they are so happy to be out of their indoor conditions and into their new shady outdoor pots!
    Isn’t SUmmer just great?

  8. Linda Vater says:

    Don’t know which I loved more. The strains of Johnny Cash singin’ in my head or your orange crush of flowers! One thing about orange…..it doesn’t shy away from the
    hot sun that this time of year. A lesson from the tropics!

  9. Kate says:

    I love the contrast between the small, dainty flowers and the huge bursts of color. We just moved to a new house where we have a lot of space, so I only planted big flowers to compensate – sunflowers, sprawling morning glories, etc. I think next summer I may try interspersing some smaller blooms – maybe as ground covers? – to break it up a little bit. Great inspiration!

  10. Tyler says:

    Hi Margaret,

    I just found your blog this week, and I love it! I also have a blog. I try to update as often as I can – so far it’s been focused on my new house – haven’t even had time to get around to landscaping yet!

    Love your begonias! I successfully overwintered my red dragon wing begonia in my sun room this winter (I live in California). One of my favorites!

    Also, if you are looking for Million Bells, I used to get it from Hines Horticulture when I was a buyer for one of the box stores, so you may want to look into who buys from Hines in your area (they also sell to independents) – Terra Cotta was always available, and I used to plant it underneath my roses for summer color after the roses were done. Spectacular!


    1. Margaret says:

      Welcome, Tyler, and than you. Hines is a great producer of plants — I have toured their facility years back when I worked for Martha Stewart. Fascinating. Some of the nurseries here buy from Hines, so I will remember to ask next year. So many “million bells” and whatever else they are all being called, it’s hard to keep up, right? :) See you soon again I hope, and thanks for the kind words.

  11. Rae Koberna says:

    I, too, shy away from orange, but these plants have enticed me to keep on the lookout for most of these varieties.

  12. Rose says:

    Three years ago I went to your open garden and fell in love Angelica Gigas and found it this year at Wards Nursery in Gt. Barrigton. Thanks for letting the world in to see your beautiful gardens.

    1. Margaret says:

      Welcome, Rose. I am so happy to see A. gigas in more and more nurseries. I know I have helped its cause, as have other friends who have long loved this Little Shop of Horrors flower. :) Enjoy it!

  13. Delores says:

    I find it interesting that the tropical colors grabbed me this year too—hot orange, yellow, peach and red. I planted Luau Peach Mai Tai Hibiscus and Luau Pipedream Tangerine Hibisucs, Amazon Sunset (parrots beak lotus hybrid), Papaya Petunias, Deep Red Zinnia and 21st Century Crimson Phlox and Blitz pure gold Elatior Begonia. I’ve mixed in some whites, chartruse, and deep purples for relief. The pots and beds are beautiful but still small — we’ve so much rain in NE it looks like Ireland! Once the sun and heat hit, I think we’ll see an explosion of color here. Loved your slide show.

  14. Stephanie says:

    This is my second year of growing an orange garden, just a small patch in a sunny corner against my house. I think the most fun is in April, when the orange tulips (Early Harvest) bloom, because they’re so incredibly bright compared to everything else. They’re followed by fritillaria rubra, orange pansies, and another orange tulip called Amazon…not for the faint of heart. I’m hoping my year-old orange/yellow striped rose ‘Oranges ‘n Lemons’ will bloom in a few weeks. After that, golden-orange crocosmia, lilies, and orange cosmos. This all came about when I realized that I don’t like orange flowers with other colors, but love them on their own.

  15. Dolores says:

    Thanks for sharing so much with us. I am having difficulty seeing your slideshow. I click on the first picture but can’t get to the others.

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