Plants for Spring & Summer

The warm months of spring and the hot months of summer are conducive to the growth of many, if not most plant species. Gardeners looking for plants that produce their healthiest foliage and best-looking flowers during the spring and summer will have little trouble finding the right plants.

Fairy Fanflower

A native of coastal Eastern Australia, fairy fanflower (Scaevola aemula) is a low-growing herbaceous perennial that boasts fan-shaped flowers in a range of blue, purple and white shades. The plant produces its signature fan flowers throughout the spring and summer. Two cultivars are particularly popular, new wonder, which has purple flowers, and white wonder, which has white flowers. Fairy fanflower grows best in full sunlight or light, dappled shade in USDA Hardiness Zones 9 to 11. The plant is ideal for coastal gardens, as it has a high tolerance for salt. The drought-tolerant fanflower should be grown in loose, sandy soil. It rarely requires supplemental watering. Fairy fanflower is often cultivated as a loose ground cover, or as a container plant.

Bird of Paradise

The bird of paradise (Strelitzia reginae) is a lush tropical plant native to Africa. The plant gains its common name from its unusual, bird-like flowers. Bird of paradise is long blooming. In warm climates, the plant will bloom throughout the spring and summer, as well as winter. Bird of paradise is notable not only for its flowers, but for its broad, deep green leaves. The plant is best suited to partial sunlight or full sunlight in USDA Hardiness Zones 10A to 11A. Extremely adaptable to different soil types, the flower can be grown in alkaline, acidic or neutral soils so long as the plant gets plenty of water. Bird of paradise is excellent as a border or specimen plant.

Wooly Butterflybush

Ideal for a butterfly garden, wooly butterflybush (Buddleia marrubifolia) is a flowering shrub notable for its ability to attract scores of colorful butterflies. The plant boasts silvery oval leaves and globular orange blooms, which appear throughout the spring and summer and well into autumn. Wooly butterfly bush should be cultivated in full sunlight in USDA Hardiness Zones 6A to 10A for best results. The plant isn't terribly fussy about soil, so long as it's watered on a regular basis. Wooly butterfly bush has a naturalizing effect and will look best if left to its own devices, though it can also be contained in a large pot.

Keywords: spring plants, summer plants, spring and summer

About this Author

Michelle Wishhart is a writer based out of Astoria, Ore. She has been writing professionally for five years, starting with her position as a staff arts writer for an alternative weekly paper in Santa Cruz. She has a B.A. in fine arts from the University of California in Santa Cruz and a minor in English literature.