Houston's weather and soil is tough on flowers and plants. The summer heat, high humidity, and lack of regular rain can make it difficult for many flowers to survive. In addition, the dense clay soil drains very slowly which is challenging as well. However, picking the right plants from the start can make a big difference in the overall success of your garden and save on your water bill.
Azaleas bloom spectacularly each spring and come in a variety of colors including pink, white, red, and purple. These flowering shrubs are especially eye-popping when planted in a row. The Azalea Trail garden tour occurs every March in the River Oaks area of Houston and highlights homes with amazing azalea gardens. My own experience with azaleas is that they take more care to get established; however, the incredible display of flowers they produce is worth a little extra effort. For repeating blooms, look for the brand, Encore, which bloom in the spring, summer, and fall.
If you like easy to grow flowers, then petunias are a good choice. They have large funnel-shaped flowers that come in an array of colors including yellow, white, pink, red, and purple as well as multiple colors on the same bloom. When planted in mass, they make a great groundcover. I've used these in my garden with great success.
To give your garden some height and texture, consider a variety of Salvia with its spikes of tiny dense flowers commonly in shades of blue to purple. These plants do well in Houston because they are heat and drought tolerant.
To attract butterflies, add some verbena to your Houston garden. The clusters of small flowers including shades of purple and pink are beautiful and the plants have the added bonus of being disease resistant as well as drought tolerant.
5. Knock Out Roses
I love knock out roses. They produce gorgeous vibrant blooms and seem to do better the less I fuss over them. You will need to occasionally cut them back which helps to keep them looking full and dense, but otherwise they are low maintenance. Plus, they are one of the most disease resistant varieties of roses.
All of the flowers I have mentioned are easy to find at your local garden shop or nursery. Overall, you can't go wrong with these flowers in your garden. Just remember to make sure the soil is well-drained and you will have showy flowers from spring until fall.