The Midwestern United States typically includes the states of Missouri, Ohio, Illinois, Iowa, Kentucky, Wisconsin, Indiana and Michigan. Gardeners in these states must consider a plant's hardiness when making gardening and landscaping selections. Midwestern winters tend to be cold and dry, while the summers are typically warm and humid. Numerous flower varieties thrive in Midwest climates.
The blanket flower (Gaillardia aristata) thrives in the prairies, grasslands and mountain regions of the American Midwest. A member of the Asteraceae family, this plant blooms daisy-like, red-orange flowers from May through September. The blanket flower bears pointed, grayish-green leaves and the stems reach about 30 inches in height. Blanket flowers prefer moist, well-drained soils, but can tolerate dry soil conditions. These plants are susceptible to leaf spot, aster yellows and powdery mildew. Winter hardy in USDA zones three to eight, blanket flowers work well in containers, rock gardens, butterfly gardens and cottage gardens.
Tickseed (Coreopsis lanceolata) plants naturally grow in the Ozark region of the Midwest. This daisy relative (Asteracae) displays rayed, yellow flowers from May through July. This herbaceous perennial reaches only about two feet in height with a slightly smaller spread. Winter hardy from USDA zones four to nine, the tickseed needs well-drained soils in fully sunny locations. This plant tolerates poor soils, drought, humidity and hot temperatures. Crown rot commonly develops in tickseed planted in poorly draining soils. This plant grows well in wildflower gardens and meadows.
Butterfly weed (Asclepias tuberose) thrives in Midwestern fields and prairies. Belonging to the Asclepiadaceae family, this clump-forming plant reaches up to 2 1/2 feet in height with slightly smaller spreads. The yellow or orange flowers bloom from June through August. The butterfly weed thrives in dry soils that receive full sun. Butterfly weed earned its name because butterflies love to feed on the nectar. Leaf spot and rust diseases sometimes plague these plants. Butterfly weed plants work well in butterfly gardens, native plant areas and borders.
Rattlesnake master (Eryngium yuccifolium), also called button snake-root, is a perennial plant in the Apiaceae family. This herbaceous plant matures to five feet in height and about three feet wide. The small, stemless white flowers bloom from June through September. Rattlesnake master plants prefer dry, sandy soils in fully sunny planting sites. This plant tends to sprawl if planted in fertile soils in shady locations. Native to the prairies and rocky woods of the Midwest, the rattlesnake master plant generally thrives in USDA zones three to eight. The rattlesnake master does well in native plant gardens and as borders.
Prairie Blazing Star
Prairie blazing star (Liatris pycnostachya) is a perennial plant in the daisy family (Asteraceae). This Midwest native plant thrives in USDA hardiness zones three to nine. The prairie blazing star reaches heights between 2 and 5 feet with spreads of about 2 feet. Lilac to purple flowers bloom in July and August. This plant prefers dry soils in fully sunny locations. Prairie blazing star plants work well in borders, native plant gardens and cutting gardens.