Flower Gardening

Annuals That Can Take Hot Weather

By Jean Starr

Fuchsia ‘Upright Firecracker’:

This is a fuchsia that acts as a foliage plant, but then offers the bonus of the iconic dangling flowers that hummingbirds love. Leaves are tri-colored cream, grey-green and pink. Its upright nature (as opposed to the basket-types) makes it perfect as a mixed container accent, brightening up well-behaved grasses or a compact Sunpatiens (one of the sun-loving Impatiens). But when the blossoms arrive, you’ll have a multiple-weeklong windfall of bright red flowers.

Light: full to part sun

Size: (height by spread) 2’ x 1 ½

Uses: Upright fuchsias can be planted in the ground or in a container.

Soil type: rich but well-drained.

Special information: Visit the American Fuchsia Society for insight into the very wide world of Fuchsias.

Fuchsia – ‘Upright Firecracker’ (Photo by Jean Starr)

Hamelin patensfirebush ‘Lime Sizzler’:

It’s obvious why this plant is called firebushHamelia patens‘Lime Sizzler’ has vivid chartreuse leaves and bright orange-red flowers. The green-leaved version is commonplace in summertime Florida, but this hellaciously-hued hybrid has found a home in temperate gardens as well. Guaranteed to light up the landscape, it remains in bound during a shorter summer season, rarely reaching more than two feet tall and wide.

Light: full to part sun

Size: As an annual, will grow up to two feet tall and wide.

Uses: Firebush can be grown in the ground or in a container.

Soil type: Free-draining

Special information: Hamelia ‘Lime Sizzler’ was introduced in 2015 after being found growing on a plant with solid green leaves in El Campo, Texas in 2011.

Hamelia – ‘Lime Sizzler’ (Photo by Jean Starr)

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