22 Plants That Bloom All Summer Long (Perennials and Annual Plants) With Pictures

summer flowering plants

Growing flowers that bloom all summer long can fill your garden with glorious colors from late spring until early fall. Whether you plant summer-blooming perennials or annuals that bloom all summer, your backyard will be a sea of color. When planning your garden landscape, you can choose from a variety of flowers that bloom all summer. There are tall flowering plants, small flowering shrubs, or gorgeous blooming ground cover plants.

The Best Plants that Bloom All Summer:

  • Black-eyed Susan (Rudbeckia)—A tall flowering plant with bright yellow flowers that last all summer.
  • Dahlia—Perennial flowers that bloom from spring to fall. This plant has large, showy, colorful blooms that last from late spring until frost.
  • Coneflower (Echinacea)—The plant has large blossoms with a long flowering time from summer to fall.
  • Petunias—Colorful annual plants that grow in full sun and bloom continuously from spring until fall.
  • Lavender—A small flowering shrub that blooms all summer and comes back every year.
  • Hydrangeas—Large flowering perennial shrub with showy flowers that bloom year on year and last all summer long.
  • Rose of Sharon (Hibiscus syriacus)—Low maintenance, sun-loving shrub that flowers relentlessly throughout summer.
  • Garden phlox (Phlox paniculata)—Perennial flowering plant with dazzling fragrant blossoms that bloom all summer until fall.
  • Creeping thyme (Thymus serpyllum)—Flowering groundcover plant for full sun that creates a carpet of purple from early summer.
  • Bee balm (Monarda)—One of the showiest summer-blooming perennials with spiky red flowers that last until the fall.

Do Annuals or Perennials Come Back Every Year?

Perennial flowers come back every year, as they grow from plants that survive through the winter. Annual plants grow flowers for one growing season and don’t come back every year. However if annuals drop seeds that germinate in the spring they will flower in the next growing season.

The Best Plants that Bloom All Summer (With Pictures)

Summer flowering plants are essential for any garden as they add color, attract pollinators, and fill your yard with fragrant scents. Read on to find out the best plants that have flowers that last all summer.

Garden Phlox (Phlox paniculata)

Phlox paniculata

Garden phlox is a long blooming perennial with flowers that bloom all summer long

Garden phlox is a flowering perennial that blooms profusely all through summer until early fall. The large fragrant flowerheads are pink, rose, red, white, and lavender colors. The plant, with its lush green foliage, grows up to 4 ft. (1.2 m) tall with a spread up to 2 ft. (0.6 m). This attractive summer-bloomer thrives in full sun and partial shade.

Plant summer-flowering garden phlox as colorful border plants or grow in groups to create a flowering shrub.

Zinnia

zinnia flower

Zinnia is a flowering plant that grow showy flowers from early summer until the first frost. The flowers are generally large globular blooms that come in a variety of brilliant colors. These flowering plants grow as perennials or annuals and thrive in full sun. They are also in the list of drought-tolerant plants. Some Zinnia cultivars are tall flowering plants, and others are dwarf varieties.

One reason to choose Zinnias for your summer garden is that their cut flowers retain their blooms all summer. They also are a perfect choice for window boxes, mixed borders, containers, or edging plants.

Petunia

petunia flowers

Petunias have some of the most striking flowers from any of the annuals that flower in summer. From all of the summer bloomers on this list, petunias have one of the longest flowering periods. The trumpet-shaped colorful flowers appear in early spring and bloom until late fall. These delightful flowers can be purple, yellow, white, lavender, or coral red.

Depending on the petunia cultivar you choose, you can grow them as hanging baskets, in window boxes, or outdoor containers. Are you looking for full-sun flowering groundcover plants? Then some petunias will transform your garden landscape into a sea of beautiful color all summer long.

Hydrangeas

hydrangeas

Hydrangea is a great flowering perennial shrub with flowers that come back every year and bloom all summer

Hydrangeas are showy shrubs that add pastel colored flowers to your garden all summer—right from late spring until fall. These low-maintenance perennial flowering shrubs produce huge flower heads made up of colorful flower clusters. You can grow hydrangeas in full sun or partial shade to enjoy their pink, white, red, and blue flowers from May until September. To keep hydrangeas blooming even longer, prune spent flowers to encourage vigorous blooming.

Grow colorful hydrangeas for an easy maintenance summer garden where you need shrub borders or foundation plantings.

Coneflower (Echinacea)

Echinacea (Coneflower)

The flowers of the coneflower plant come back every year

Coneflowers are some of the hardiest perennial flowers that bloom all summer long. Showy, cone-like pink flowers grace the top of long straight stems. These summer-flowering plants will grow almost anywhere and are also drought-tolerant plants. Growing in full sun, you can expect beautiful flowers from late spring until the first frost.

Apart from providing shades of purple throughout the summer, there are many benefits to growing coneflowers (echinacea). The beautiful flowers attract pollinators, they make excellent cut flowers, and all parts of the plant have medicinal qualities.

Yarrow (Achillea millefolium)

Achillea millefolium

Yarrow plants are flowering perennials that have feathery foliage, fragrant, showy flowers, and a long blooming time. The long stems grow in clumps and can grow up to 3 ft. (1 m) tall with a spread of 2 ft. (0.6 m). These herbaceous plants blossom with white, pink, red, cream, and yellow-colored flower clusters. Growing in full sun and partial shade, the summer-blooming flowers start in late spring and last until the end of summer.

Yarrow plants are excellent to grow as a perennial border, and they are prized for their beautiful cut flowers.

Perennial Sage (Salvia)

salvia

Growing woodland sage in your garden will create a carpet of rich indigo-blue or purple colors in your summer garden. The best flowering sage cultivars to look for are Salvia sylvestris and Salvia nemorosa. These small types of shrubs bloom all summer from late spring until fall. The stunning deep purple flowers look like colorful spikes that contrast with green foliage.

Perennial sage enjoys full sun, and they provide an attractive accent along borders. The fragrant flowers will also fill your garden with scent on warm summer days.

Ornamental Onions (Allium)

allium

Ornamental onions produce purple globe-shaped flowers on the end of long straight stems. The pretty flowers are excellent for growing in clumps or along borders in cottage gardens. These purple flowering perennials are bulbs that can be planted every fall. They start producing flowers at the end of spring, and they last until the end of summer.

Ornamental onions are also excellent for cut flower displays or to use in dried flower arrangements.

Rose of Sharon (Hibiscus syriacus)

Hibiscus syriacus

The Rose of Sharon is a large flowering shrub that produces an abundance of large, showy flowers year on year. This showy perennial bush grows to between 8 and 12 ft. (2.4 – 3.6 m) and needs little maintenance. The drought-resistant deciduous bush has dark green foliage and large trumpet-shaped attractive flowers.

You can enjoy the beautiful purple, red, pink, and white flowers from late spring until the onset of frost.

Marigold (Tagetes)

tagetes

Most marigold cultivars produce huge yellow or orange showy flowers that bloom profusely from the start of summer until frost. The flowers and foliage on marigolds are extremely fragrant when crushed. Marigolds are very low maintenance annuals that perform well in full sun. They also continue to grow even in drought conditions.

Grow marigolds in containers or as bedding or edging plants. You can also use the attractive flowers for cut flower arrangements where they won’t lose their color.

Ice Plant (Delosperma cooperi)

Delosperma cooperi

Ice plants are ideal for providing colorful ground cover in hot, dry, sun-parched gardens. These evergreen succulents produce a multitude of purple-pink flowers that add color all summer long. When in full bloom, there are so many flowers that they cover the lush green foliage. This ornamental plant is excellent for full-sun groundcover or in rock gardens.

Ice plants grow up to 6” (15 cm) tall and spread vigorously without much maintenance. You can also grow this plant in containers if you’ve got a sunny balcony or patio.

Lavender

lavender

Lavender is an excellent flower to plant in your perennial garden

Lavender is a wonderful perennial shrub that flowers from spring until late summer every year. The attraction of growing lavender is more than just its pretty purple flowers. Lavender shrubs are low maintenance, don’t need a lot of water, withstand full sun, and have many medicinal uses. Many different lavender cultivars are suitable for growing in most sunny gardens if you want summer-long purple flowers.

Dahlia

dahlia is a perennial flower that blooms from spring to fall

Dahlia has flowers that come back every year and bloom all summer

Depending on the cultivar, dahlias produce a variety of flowers in all shapes and sizes. Dahlias generally bloom profusely throughout the summer until frost. Some of the flowers can be like small daisies, and other huge, showy double flowers can be as large as 6” to 8” (15 – 20 cm) in diameter. Dahlia plants are perennials that are generally grown as annuals.

Some of the most stunning dahlias are the ‘Arabian Night’ with black flowers, the ‘Apache’ with spiky crimson red blooms, and the ‘Andrea Lawson’ with large white pompom-like flowers.

Coreopsis

coreopsis

Coreopsis flowers throughout the summer and is a perennial plant that blooms every year. Growing in full sun, coreopsis plants have a bushy growth habit and produce a horde of dazzling yellow flowers. Some striking star-shaped flowers are yellow and burgundy, some are white and red, and others are various shades of yellow or purple.

The compact size of coreopsis shrubs mean that they are excellent for mass plantings, containers, or planted along borders.

Black-Eyed Susan (Rudbeckia)

Rudbeckia

Black-Eyed Susan has long flower stems and can be planted at the middle or back of flower beds or borders

Black-eyed Susan produces stunning golden yellow daisy-like flowers throughout the summer months and well into the fall. Its spectacular flowers grow on the end of tall  flower stems, making the plant excellent for creating a colorful accent. The flowers are prolific bloomers that don’t stop until the frost arrives. These sun-loving plants are grown as tender perennials or annuals.

Black-eyed Susan flowers also make for great cut flower arrangements as they keep their color for a long time.

Stonecrop (Sedum)

sedum

Stonecrop flowers are some of the easiest summer-blooming plants to grow in your garden if you want months of pretty flowers. These low-growing flowering perennials will bloom for six months or more. They thrive in full sun and can survive with minimal watering. The clumping growth habit of these plants gives you bushy flowers all through summer and even into winter.

Even if you don’t have a garden, you can enjoy stonecrop in containers located in a sunny spot on a south-facing balcony.

Catmint (Nepeta racemosa)

Nepeta racemosa

Catmint is a small shrubby perennial that blooms from spring through summer and into the fall. The flowering plant produces dainty blue flowers that give off a heavenly fragrance. These flower spikes stand erect above silver-gray foliage that combines to make catmint an excellent border, container, or ground cover plant.

Plant this low-maintenance plant in full sun and give it the occasional watering to help it thrive in warm summer climates.

Daylilies (Hemerocallis)

Hemerocallis

Daylilies are some of the easiest perennial plants to care for if you want all summer-long flowers in your yard. The showy flowers grow in a wide array of colors and don’t need much care. The plants are drought-tolerant and thrive in full sun conditions. Although the single blooms don’t last long, each plant continues producing flowers throughout the summer and fall season.

Daylilies are extremely adaptable summer flowers that grow in various conditions. They grow just as well in full sun as they do in partial shade. This plant can grow in moist, well-draining soil or continue to flower in dry soil.

Snapdragon (Antirrhinum majus)

Antirrhinum majus

Snapdragons will bloom for months from late spring with eye-catching pastel-colored large flowers. The spiked-shaped flowers grow on the end of tall stems that are covered in green lanceolate leaves. Snapdragons are tender perennials that are grown as annuals. You can plant them anywhere if you want colorful blooms at eye-level. Some of the tallest snapdragons grow up to 3 ft. (1 m) tall.

These drought-tolerant summer bloomers have flowers in peach, yellow, pink, red, and bi-colors.

Bee Balm (Monarda)

Monarda

Bee balm produces spiky brightly-colored red or lilac flowers that look like small firework displays. The small colorful flowers create the biggest impact in your summer garden when planted in mass. The flowers bloom for around six weeks from the middle of summer until fall. These striking perennials with showy flowers help to brighten up borders, attract butterflies, and provide color late in the season.

The stiff stems of bee balm and showy small flowerheads make these an excellent choice for cut flower displays.

Speedwell (Veronica longifolia)

Veronica longifolia

Speedwell is a type of summer flowering plant that produces graceful flowers throughout the growing season. The spiky flowers come in pastel shades of blue, pink, violet, or purple. One reason why speedwell is a popular plant is that it has flowers that bloom all summer and return every year. These tall flowering plants grow up to 4 ft. (1.2 m) and their slender, wand-like flowerheads brighten up a summer landscape.

Speedwell plants are also excellent non-fading cut flowers that can help to beautify any type of cut flower floral display.

Butterfly Bush (Buddleja)

Buddleja

The beautiful flowers on butterfly bushes start blooming in mid-summer and continue until the first frost. As its common name suggests, these delightful flowering summer plants attract a multitude of butterflies. The clusters of purple, white, or yellow flowers form a cone shape. These shrubby plants grow as perennials and are evergreen or deciduous, depending on your climate. The beauty of growing butterfly bush cultivars in your garden is that they still flower when many other plants have stopped. Their stiff stems and flower clusters create attractive cut flowers for fall and winter displays.

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