A collection of deciduous, flowering shrubs excels in full sun. Among them are the crape myrtles (Lagerstroemia), with hybrids such as Choctaw, Bicolor and Acoma requiring abundant sunlight. Small hybrid crabapple (Malus) shrubs like Jewelberry and Tina flower profusely in full sun. A common trait among the rose family (Rosa) is that full-sun locations bring out the best in these shrubs, with species such as the shrub rose and the large-flowered climbing rose no exceptions. Spireas (Spireae) is another full sun flowering shrub, with types such as steeplebush and Japanese spirea falling into this category.
Plants From Bulbs
In many instances, plant the flowering plants that develop from bulbs in autumn and let them overwinter in the ground. Among the sun-loving bulb species are many tulips (Tulipa), including their hybrids. The Missouri Botanical Garden notes the parent species often make better perennials than the cultivars. Other plants from bulbs that need full sun are the daffodils, hyacinths, gladiolus and ornamental onions. The onion species do well in sunny, dry sites in your garden or flowerbeds.
Full-sun annuals appropriate for flower gardens, rock gardens and other venues include different kinds of sunflowers, zinnias and marigolds. One particularly colorful and quick-growing sunflower is the Mexican sunflower (Tithonia rotundifolia), a type growing to 6 feet in a single growing season featuring an orange flower. The moss rose (Portulaca grandiflora) is a much smaller flowering plant for full sun, growing to 9 inches and suitable as groundcover. Melampodium (Melampodium divaricatum) is a good choice of an annual for pots and containers, possessing yellow blooms and doing great in the sun.
Many perennial flowering plants for full sun exist. Pay attention to the cold hardiness of these species if you live where winters are fierce. Some perennials with attractive flowers for colder climates are the yarrows, asters and milkweeds. Other common perennials for abundant sunshine include many sunflowers, different species of hibiscus, varieties of milkweeds and sneezeweeds and an array of irises. Mulleins, vervains, ironweeds and several sorts of speedwell species and hybrids are also suitable as a full-sun perennial.