Gardeners across the United States will time their plantings so that by the beginning of summer, many of their flowers will be in bloom. Among the most vibrant and popular flowers that will bloom during the month of July are larkspur, gladiolus and daylily. Each of these flowers is a welcome sight in a garden as the summer begins.
A common garden flower called the gladiolus is a July bloomer and is a favorite flower for floral arrangements. It grows from what a botanist terms a "corm," which resembles the bulbs from which flowers like tulip and daffodils develop. You can plant gladioli in the middle of May and they will bloom by July. The plant needs an area with access to full sun, and the soil must drain well for the best results. The gladiolus flower emerges on tall spikes, and the blossoms may be a wide range of colors, with about the only color type not available being deep blue. Multiple flowers develop on each spike. The ideal way to cut them in July is to choose one with just two or three blossoms open, cut them at night or at dawn to stay out of the heat and put them in lukewarm water. The closed flowers will open, typically from the bottom of the spike up toward the top.
Daylilies, named because they close their flower before nighttime and then open up in the morning, also are in their flowering prime in July. You have probably seen the daylilies that inhabit the edges of highways and fields, which, according to the website Daylilies.org, are cultivated forms that have managed to germinate away from gardens and thrive. Most of these are either orange or yellow, but the hybridized versions come in a much broader selection of colors. Daylilies come in colors such as red, yellow, orange and pink. They require very little maintenance to do well in a garden setting, can withstand drought conditions if need be and will be in bloom from late spring through July and sometimes into the early part of fall. The flower originated in Asia, but since about 1930, American and English hybridizers have been working to introduce new types.
Larkspur, a member of the family of flowers that includes the buttercup, is July's birth flower and is in bloom during the month it represents. Larkspur is another flower that emerges clustered on large spikes, on stems that can be as tall as 6 feet. There are over a thousand cultivated kinds of larkspur, with another 150 species growing wild around the world. The flower's shape when it is unopened resembles a dolphin, giving it another name--delphinium--from the Latin word "delphinus," which translates into dolphin. Larkspurs are most often blue, but certain cultivars may be purple, scarlet and even pink. Bees, butterflies and hummingbirds congregate to pollinate larkspur.