Top 22 Florida Flowers With Pictures (Native and Non-Native)

florida plants

The hot, humid summer of the Sunshine State makes it challenging to find flowers for Florida. Long, warm sunny days mean that Florida flowers have a tough time surviving. The best flowers that grow in Florida are ones that thrive in full sun and partial shade. Many types of tropical flowers are ideal for Florida, as they love humid temperatures and plenty of sunshine.

One of the challenges of growing plants in Florida is its diverse climate. North Florida gets colder winters and maybe some frost. However, in Central and South Florida, year-long sunshine, together with stifling humidity, make growing flowers challenging. But there are plenty of native Florida flowers and non-native plants that thrive in the Sunshine State.

Of course, Florida isn’t just famous for beautiful flowers that seem to last all year long. Florida produces most of the orange crop in the U.S. Due to its connection with these flowering citrus trees, the state flower of Florida is the blossom of the orange tree (orange blossom).

This article looks at the best flowers, plants, and shrubs to grow in Florida. Along with pictures of Florida flowers, descriptions of plants will help you decide on the best flowers for your southern gardens.

Growing Zones in Florida

Florida has four USDA growing zones—zones 8 to 11—and these zones will affect what kind of flowering plants you can grow in Florida gardens.

The northern part of the state around Jacksonville is zone 8, where temperatures can drop to 15°F (-9°C) in winter.

Central Florida, where Orlando is located, is in zone 9, where minimum temperatures are 25°F (-3.9°C).

South Florida is zone 10, and the Florida Keys are in Zone 11. Flowers growing in southern Florida will not survive any cold snaps or frost.

The Top Florida Flowers to Have in Your Garden (With Pictures)

Let’s looks at some of the top flowers to grow in sunny gardens in Florida.

Lantana

lantana

The colorful lantana flowers grow well in the tropical area of south Florida

Lantana is a stunning colorful flower native to Florida. The evergreen plant bloom continuously throughout the summer, filling Florida gardens with flowers in shades of pink, yellow, red, lavender, and creamy white. Lantana flowers are ideal for mixed flower beds, borders, and containers in southern Florida.

These perennial shrubs thrive in full sun and are ideal for Florida gardens. The colorful herbaceous plants grow up to 1 ft. (30 cm) tall. Lantana is a flowering Florida plant that grows in zones 10 and 11.

Bougainvillea

bougainvillea

Bougainvillea flowers comes in various colors such as white, pink, purple, red, orange and yellow and are suitable to grow in central and south Florida

Bougainvillea is a showy flowering shrub, popular in southern Florida gardens. The large bush produces masses of vibrantly colored flowers that bloom for most of the year. These evergreen ornamental shrubs grow from 3 to 40 ft. (1 to 12 m) high and the same wide. Bougainvillea grows best against walls, covering arbors, a ground cover on slopes, or in mass plantings.

Bougainvillea is ideal for the Florida climate where humidity and long hours of sunshine keep the evergreen foliage lush and the flowers bright and gorgeous. These stunning flowers are suitable for zones 9 – 11 and thrive throughout the Sunshine State.

Blue Daze (Evolvulus)

Evolvulus glomeratus Blue daze

Blue daze can be grown in Florida as a ground cover plant for full sun

Blue daze is a flowering ground cover plant, ideal for Florida’s sunny climate. Blue daze produces dainty bluepurple flowers and blooms continuously during spring and summer. Easy to care for, regular rainfall is enough to keep the drought-tolerant plant thriving. Blue daze grows as a perennial in South and Central Florida and as a half-hardy perennial or annual in North Florida.

This ground-hugging southern perennial only reaches 6” (15 cm) in height and has a spreading nature. Suitable for zones 9 – 11.

Egyptian Star Flower (Pentas lanceolata)

Egyptian Star Flower (Pentas lanceolata)

Pentas are low growing flowering plants that are grown as perennials in south Florida

Simply called pentas, this perennial Florida flower thrives in full sun. Clusters of star-shaped pink, red, white, or lilac-colored flowers create beautiful blooms throughout the summer. Loving humidity, heat, and sun, pentas flowers are ideally suited to Florida’s climate. Plant in full sun in mixed beds, along borders, or as mass plantings.

Pentas grow as perennials in zones 10 and 11. If you live in North Florida, grow pentas in containers, and take indoors during the winter.

Periwinkle (Vinca)

Periwinkle (Vinca)

The trailing nature of periwinkle makes it ideal as a ground cover in Florida Landscaped gardens

Periwinkle plants are ideal perennial ground cover flowers for Florida. The mat-forming foliage thrives in full sun, and violet-colored flowers bloom from spring until summer. To brighten up your southern garden, choose variegated periwinkle plants that have yellow and green leaves contrasting with purple flowers. But don’t worry if you’ve got a shaded garden, these ground-hugging plants thrive in the shade as well as sun.

Periwinkles are ideal flowers for growing in all zones in Florida.

Canna Lily (Canna indica)

Canna Lily (Canna indica)

Canna lily flowers best in full sun but can tolerate part shade

Canna lilies are native Florida flowers and have dramatic foliage and ornamental flowers. Canna lilies grow best in borders, along walls, or even as small foliage hedges. These tender perennials bloom throughout the summer until fall in all Florida zones.

The orange, yellow, pink, red, or cream Canna lily flowers are short-lived. Still, the plant’s profuse blooming means your Florida garden has a constant supply of papery, colorful flowers.

Canna lilies are tall perennial flowers that reach a height of 2 to 3 ft. (60 – 90 cm). They grow as perennials in zones 8 to 11 and annuals in colder climates.

Tickseed (Coreopsis)

Tickseed (Coreopsis)

Tickseeds are hardy drought tolerant flowers that are common in Florida

Tickseed is the official wildflower of Florida. These sunny flowers are bright golden yellow with ray-like petals radiating from the amber-colored center. Many of the 100 species of tickseed are perennial bloomers in Florida, where they grow as low-maintenance, drought-resistant flowers. Their long blooming season means that tickseed flowers last from summer until fall.

Apart from masses of bright yellow flowers, tickseed flowers can be white, pink, red, orange, or bicolored. Easy to grow, tickseed thrives best in sunny mixed beds, borders, or containers. Suitable for growing in zones 3 to 10.

Gerbera Daisies (Gerbera garvinea)

gerbera daisy

The bright cheerful colors of gerbera daisy make it a great choice for adding decorative touch to front or backyards in Florida

Gerbera daisies are showy ornamental flowers that grow in Florida. These daisy species are semi-evergreen perennials that have large rosette flowers. The sun-like colorful flower heads are 2” (5 cm) in diameter and sit at the top of straight tubular stems. Gerbera daisies need full sun and well-draining soil. However when the temperature is high, gerbera daisies will benefit from afternoon shade.

Grow these daisies at the front of flower beds, along borders, or in patio containers. Gerbera garvinea daises are perennials in all parts of Florida.

Purslane (Portulaca oleracea)

Purslane (Portulaca oleracea)

Grow purslane in a sunny location with well-draining soil

Purslane is a flowering ground cover plant which is ideal for Florida flower gardens. Purslane is a type of succulent with oval-shaped leaves and bright yellow flowers. The low-growing flowers don’t reach more than 3” (7 cm) tall, and they have a wide spread. However, purslane isn’t an invasive Florida flowering plant.

Purslane grows best as a mat-forming annual to give color to sunny Florida yards. You can also grow flowering purslane in hanging baskets, pots, or planters to brighten up a deck or patio. Purslane is suitable for Florida zones as well as cold climates.

Bolivian Sunset (Gloxinia sylvatica)

Bolivian Sunset (Gloxinia sylvatica)

Bolivian sunset flowering plants grow well in filtered sun or dappled shade

Bolivian Sunset gloxinia is a spectacular winter-flowering plant for Florida gardens. The low-growing shrubby plant can grow up to 2 ft. (60 cm) tall and wide and produces bright red flowers that contrast with glossy green foliage. Bolivian Sunset gloxinia grows best along borders or as foundation plantings. Easy to grow, Bolivian Sunset blooms in Florida from mid-fall until mid-winter.

Bolivian Sunset flowers thrive in Florida zones 9 to 11.

Mexican Petunia (Ruellia brittoniana)

Mexican Petunia (Ruellia brittoniana)

Petunias are one of the best Florida flowers to grow in hanging baskets

Mexican petunia has trumpet-like ruffled flowers that grow as perennials in Florida. The hardy southern perennials are resistant to heat, humidity, and drought—perfect for Florida’s hot, muggy climate. Mexican petunias produce clusters of pretty dainty purple flowers. This petunia species grows well in full sun and can withstand soggy, wet soils.

Mexican petunias are lovely flowers that grow in Florida zones 8 to 10 and bloom all summer into the fall.

Zinnia

Zinnia

The ornamental zinnia flowers need to be planted in a location that gets full sun

Zinnias are spectacular flowers that bring masses of color to Florida gardens. Zinnias are famous for their large, showy flower heads that can have single, double, or ruffled petals. Some flowers can be up to 6” (15 cm) in diameter. Many species of zinnias are suitable for Florida’s hot and humid climate. Zinnias are the ideal border plant where they bloom continuously from early summer until late fall.

Low-maintenance zinnias produce lots of flowers throughout the season. Zinnias are annuals that need replanting every year. Ideal for planting in any Florida garden, they are cold hardy in zones 2 to 11.

Blanket Flower (Gaillardia)

Blanket Flower (Gaillardia)

The beautiful blanket flowers give a bright focal point to Florida gardens

Blanket flowers are colorful daisy-like flowers for all Florida USDA zones. The clumps of dense foliage produce magnificent displays of short-lived bright orange, red, and yellow bi-colored flowers. The sun-loving perennials return year after year to add warm colors to Florida gardens. These shrubby flowers can grow up to 3 ft. (0.9 m) tall.

Easy-care blanket flowers grow best in perennial borders, flower beds, or containers—ideal for growing in residential gardens in Florida zones 8 to 11.

Coneflower (Echinacea)

coneflower (Echinacea)

The tall coneflower is a native Florida flower that requires very little maintenance

Purple coneflowers are native Florida plants. Coneflowers are elegant, tall, hardy perennials that require no care to come back year after year. Coneflowers are famous for their tall stems and large flowers with petals that droop down to form a cone shape. Grow coneflowers as stunning landscape plants wherever you need visual height.

These long-blooming Florida flowers thrive in full sun and are extremely drought resistant. Coneflowers are hardy perennials for southern states such as Florida, as well as colder climates.

Hibiscus

Hibiscus coccineus

Hibiscus coccineus is a native Florida flower found in marshes and swamps in Southeastern U.S.

Hibiscus flowering shrubs grow as evergreen perennials in Florida. Hibiscus flowers have a long-blooming season, and their large, showy pastel-colored flowers are a delight in any summer garden. Flowers growing on hibiscus can be deep red, pink, white, or have patterns like a raspberry ripple.

In South Florida, hibiscus flowers grow as perennials and bloom all year long. In North Florida, hibiscus dies back in the frost but then grows back the following year.

The hibiscus species Hibiscus coccineus is native to Florida and is also named marsh hibiscus, scarlet rosemallow, or swamp mallow. This Florida plant has gorgeous blooms that are bright red and flower from mid-summer until the fall. This native Florida flower is hardy in zones 6 to 13.

Ixora

Ixora

Ixora is a compact sun-loving shrub that can be pruned as a hedge in central and south Florida

Ixora is a popular flower in South Florida. Also called ‘flame of the woods,’ Ixora produces flowers throughout the year, and the long-lasting blooms can last for up to eight weeks. This tropical Florida plant has glossy dark green leaves and clusters of red, yellow, orange or pink flowers. Ixora flowers grow best as flowering hedges, evergreen privacy screens, or color-infused border plants.

This ever-blooming shrub grows best in South and Central Florida but away from coastal regions. If you live in zone 9—North Florida—grow Ixora as a container plant on your patio.

Firespike (Odontonema cuspidatum)

Firespike (Odontonema cuspidatum)

Firespike is a flowering bush in Florida that will bloom best in full sun

Firespike has long red showy flowers that bloom year-round in South Florida. In North and Central Florida, firespike’s blooming season is fall and winter. Firespike is a perennial shrub that’s ideal for planting at the back of garden beds. The large shrub grows to between 4 and 6 ft. (1.2 – 1.8 m) tall.

Firespike is a drought-tolerant plant that grows throughout the state of Florida.

Star Jasmine (Trachelospermum jasminoides)

Star Jasmine (Trachelospermum jasminoides)

The fragrant white flowers of star jasmine and its climbing nature make it ideal to cover walls and trellises in Florida

Star Jasmine is not a native Florida flowering bush. And, despite its common name, it isn’t a real type of jasmine. The vining, climbing plant produces masses of star-shaped white flowers on twining stems. These clusters of creamy-white flowers have a heavenly scent. Star jasmine grows best in Florida gardens as privacy fences, covering arbors, or climbing up walls.

Star jasmine is a sun-loving climbing plant with blossom-filled foliage throughout most of the year. As a flowering vine, star jasmine grows in zones 8 – 10.

Peace Lily (Spathiphyllum)

peace lily

Grow peace lilies in a shady location with moist soil

Peace lilies are ideal ground cover shade plants for the southern coast of Florida. These evergreen perennial plants have brilliant white flowers emerging from glossy green foliage. The large leaves and love of shade make peace lilies ideal for growing under trees, along shaded borders, or as an accent in a mixed bed.

Peace lilies shouldn’t be confused with true lilies (Lilium) or calla lilies (Zantedeschia).

Peace lilies are clumping plants that grow to between 2 and 3 ft. (0.6 – 0.9 m) high. These plants grow as perennials outdoors in zones 10 and 11. In Florida zone 9, grow peace lilies in containers and bring them indoors during the winter.

Tropical Scarlet Sage (Salvia coccinea)

tropical sage (Salvia coccinea)

Scarlet sage grows best in full sun but can tolerate some shade

Scarlet sage is a flowering herbaceous tender perennial plant native to the Sunshine State. Also called blood sage, this plant has crimson red flowers and heart-shaped leaves. The flowering stems grow up to 3 ft. (0.9 m) tall. Scarlet sage is herbaceous perennial in warmer climates that has a spread of 1 ft. (30 cm). Plant in full sun or partial shade to enjoy this shrubby flowering plant in southern states.

Scarlet sage is a southern native flower that thrives in zones 8 to 10.

Lavender (Lavandula)

Lavender (Lavandula)

Lavender is commonly found ornamental plant in many Florida gardens

Some types of lavender grow exceptionally well in Florida’s hot and humid climate. Look for the species such as ‘Phenomenal’ lavender, Goodwin Creek Gray lavender, or Spanish Lavender for zone 9 lavenders.

Growing lavender in Florida helps fill your southern gardens with delightful herbaceous scents and lilac colors.

Spotted Deadnettle (Lamium maculatum)

Spotted Deadnettle (Lamium maculatum)

Spotted deadnettles are best grown in North Florida as a shade-loving ground cover

Spotted deadnettle flower is an ideal ground cover perennial for shade in Florida gardens. Spotted nettle has colorful foliage and dainty purple flowers that bloom for a long time. In Florida climates, spotted dead nettle grows as an evergreen flowering plant. Spotted deadnettle grows best in shaded gardens, as border plants, or under shrubs and trees.

To add more beauty to your southern garden, choose white or silver variegated varieties of spotted dead nettle.

Spotted dead nettle is only suitable for growing in zone 8. So, grow Lamium as ground cover in North Florida on the west coast and around the Gulf of Mexico.

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