Flowers in the 1-to-3-foot range can be grown to create a dense, meadow-like garden that is a joy to wander through. Gardeners who are looking for manageable, knee-high flowers have a range of colorful options that will produce their healthiest, most attractive blooms in full sun.
Dahlia 'Bashful' (Dahlia spp.) is a perennial dahlia cultivar that sports velvety, dark pink flowers accented by large yellow stamens. The plant grows to be close to knee high, reaching an average height of between 1 to 3 feet. Highly attractive to butterflies, the dahlia is excellent for extended color in a border or flower bed, as it blooms throughout summer and fall. Dahlia 'Bashful' thrives in full sunlight in USDA zones 9 to 11. Plant the dahlia in a well draining soil, and water when dry. Remove dead flowers to keep the plant producing its showy blooms throughout the season. The stiff stem of the dahlia and the long lasting blooms makes the dahlia ideal as a cut flower.
A member of the bellflower family, cardinal flower (Lobelia cardinalis) is a short-lived perennial notable for its 1 to 3 foot stalk of tubular, bright red flowers. The plant also sports a dark, purplish colored stem and rows of dull green leaves. A native of the eastern and southern United States, cardinal flower is pollinated by the ruby-throated hummingbird and is excellent for those looking to add a little wildlife to the area. Cardinal flower does well in full sunlight in USDA zones 3 to 10. The plant is not drought tolerant, but it will thrive in wet, even flooded, soils. The summer blooming plant is a low-maintenance addition to any pond side or wet area of the garden.
Also called dusty miller, rose campion (Lychnis coronaria) is a low-growing perennial that reaches an average height of between 2 to 3 feet. The plant is characterized by silvery gray leaves, which are soft to the touch, and by its flowers, which range in color from hot magenta to white. Rose campion originally hails from northern Africa, Europe and the Middle East. The warm weather loving plant thrives in full sunlight in USDA zones 3 to 8. Rose campion prefers a well draining, limey or poor soil, and will not grow well in rich soils. The plant is moderately drought tolerant, but should be watered during the summer for optimal flowering.