The Best Flowers to Plant in Summer

Summer brings to the garden long, hot days and a reduction in moisture. While many flowers shrink at the thought of drought and humidity, other summer-loving flowers thrive and flourish. Grown in a wide range of colors, sizes and shapes, the best summer flowers are drought- and heat-tolerant. With an ability to grow in a wide range of soil varieties, the flower has a better chance of establishment and blooming within the garden.

Purple Coneflower

Purple coneflower (Echinacea purpurea) is a perennial summer-blooming flower. Growing 3 to 6 feet tall and 1 to 3 feet wide, purple coneflower has a clumping growth habit and upright shape. Drought- and heat-tolerant, purple coneflowers withstand high summer temperatures where other flowers cannot. A bird and butterfly attractant, purple coneflower is ideal nestled along a front flowerbed or grown in a cutting garden to use for fresh-cut floral arrangements. Purple coneflower has a 6-inch-wide flower that is pink to purple with golden brown centers that resemble a beehive. The lance-shaped leaves are bright green to contrast with the bright flower heads. Long-lasting, purple coneflowers bloom from summer through fall. They require full sun only and well-drained soil to thrive. To promote a long flowering season, deadhead or remove the spent purple coneflower blooms as soon as they are visible. The USDA hardiness zones for planting are 3 to 9.

Threadleaf Coreopsis

Threadleaf coreopsis (Coreopsis verticillata) is a summer-blooming perennial with pale yellow flowers. Growing 9 to 18 inches tall, threadleaf coreopsis is ideal planted as a ground cover because of its low-growing nature. The star-like blossoms of threadleaf coreopsis bloom from summer to fall, making for a long-lasting summer flower variety. Threadleaf coreopsis is drought- and heat-tolerant, creating a hardy garden flower. The green parsley-like foliage on threadleaf coreopsis is high textured and complements surrounding plants that are bright and colorful. Threadleaf coreopsis has a moderate growth rate and is tolerant of a wide range of soil varieties. Threadleaf coreopsis requires full sun to part shade. The zones for planting are 3 to 9.


Zinnia (Zinnia elegans) is a colorful annual flower with a long-blooming season and rapid growth rate, the perfect summer flower. Growing in clumps ranging from 6 to 36 inches tall, zinnia flowers bloom in a rainbow of colors including, pink, yellow, orange and red. The tall, erect stems are bright green and make ideal fresh-cut flowers. Zinnia has 2-inch flower heads that are single, semidouble or double in form. Deer- and drought-tolerant, zinnia can be grown anywhere in the garden where color is needed. Lining a garden walkway, zinnia is striking. Zinnia requires full sun and well-drained soil. The zones for planting are 3 to 10.

Keywords: best summer flowers, purple coneflower, threadleaf coreopsis, zinnia flower

About this Author

Callie Barber is a writer, designer and photographer in North Carolina. Barber's love for design and writing inspired her to create Design Your Revolution, a blog that shares creative and affordable ways to decorate your indoor and outdoor living environment. Her articles have appeared in and and her photography has been featured in "Automotive News" magazine and