The Lone Star State's Best Flowers for Your Garden

Team McFly Sep 16, 2023
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Table of Contents
  1. Flower Gardening in Texas
    1. Annuals / Perennials
    2. Shrubs
    3. Roses
    4. Grasses
    5. Grow Native and Naturalized Plants
    6. Take Advantage of The Seasons

Flower Gardening in Texas

Whether you're a homeowner or commercial landscaper, adding flowers can bring out the beauty of your yard! Although flower gardening in Texas can be challenging, it's achievable.

When selecting flowers for our hot, dry climate, you must select those that thrive and avoid those that don't. Check out the list below to discover which plants would make a great addition to your landscape.

Flower Gardening in Texas

Annuals / Perennials

Annuals and perennials share many similarities regarding light requirements, moisture needs, soil requirements, and optimal bloom times. But they have some significant distinctions you should know before selecting which plant is ideal for your Texas flower garden.

Perennials, typically planted from seed, remain healthy and attractive for several years before sprouting again in the spring. While they don't need as much attention as annuals do, yearly care is still necessary to ensure they remain to look their best.

Some perennials can even "self-seed," meaning they will produce new flowers without your assistance the following year, making them an ideal addition to your garden. Furthermore, perennials typically thrive in Texas' climate zones.

Dianthus, which can be grown as either an annual or perennial, features vibrant flowers that bloom all summer long and offer a striking contrast to other plants. They make great accents to borders or mixed containers and also make excellent cut flowers.

Decorative shrubs and grasses are another way to add vibrant color and vibrancy to your Texas landscape. Glossy abelia, bottlebrush, and germander are hardy bushes that thrive in our climate zone.

Maintaining your perennials is a good idea; thinning or dividing them periodically is recommended. Doing this prevents them from becoming too large or crowded, keeping them healthy and producing more flowers. Dividing can often be done with either a sharp knife or a spade.


Shrubs are an essential element of any flower garden, offering a range of heights and textures that can complement taller plants for an eye-catching aesthetic.

  • Butterfly Bush

  • Purple beautyberry

Many shrubs are heat-tolerant, making them perfect for Texas landscapes. Some even feature berries - an attractive addition to any flower garden!

Rosemary is an adaptable plant that thrives in various soil conditions and can serve as ground cover. Its fragrance attracts bees - making it the ideal choice for any Texas garden.

Desert broom is another heat-tolerant plant that thrives in Texas weather. This fast-growing evergreen shrub with white flowers can grow up to six feet high and wide in this dry climate.

Though it may lose leaves during drought, this flower garden perennial is still an excellent option in Texas. Its clump-forming habit makes it perfect for foundation plantings, cottage gardens, or shrub borders.

Turk's cap is another ideal shrub for Texas gardens, featuring vibrant red hibiscus-like flowers in summer and fall. This native North American shrub thrives best in shaded gardens and is an attractive ornamental for hummingbirds.


Roses add a vibrant splash of color and fragrance to a Texas garden, and there are many varieties to choose from. Planting the right type of roses is essential for its success in your landscape design.

  • China roses

  • Musk roses

  • Noisette

  • Penelope hybrid

Most roses are easy to care for and come in various colors and sizes. Some will bloom continuously throughout the year, while others will only bloom once during a particular season. Climbing roses can be trained along trellises or fences for added visual interest.

Generally, roses require little maintenance and rarely suffer from pest or disease issues. They do, however, need periodic pruning for best results.

To ensure the health of your roses, start by cultivating high-quality soil that has been amended and amended before planting. Consider creating a raised flower bed for extra coverage if your soil is thin.

Bare-root plants should be purchased in the late winter or early spring. These are typically stored under cool conditions, with their roots kept moist.

Once your plants are selected, dig holes approximately twelve to twenty-four inches deep and sixteen to eighteen inches in diameter for each one. Fill these holes with equal amounts of Tree & Shrub Garden Soil, gently pressing it into place around each root ball. Be sure to water thoroughly after planting your seeds.

Roses can be planted nearly anywhere in Texas, provided they receive adequate sunlight, proper soil preparation, and care instructions. In moist soil, most flowering shrub fertilizers work well; however, in humid weather, fungal diseases like black spots or powdery mildew may attack the leaves of rose bushes. To prevent these from developing, apply an organic anti-fungal product during fall or winter to help combat humidity.

texas grass


For plants that are tough, versatile, and make an impact, grasses are your perfect pick. Native prairie plants in Austin can thrive in various soil conditions, offering numerous benefits like color, movement, and texture.

  • Gulf muhly

  • Lindheimer muhly

  • Mexican feather grass

In addition to these benefits, ornamental grasses often attract birds and butterflies as larval hosts, making them a great option for adding some wildlife interest to your garden. Travis County Master Gardener Linda Drga suggests placing a bird bath near your ornamental grass beds so that small birds have access to water and shelter while feeding off of the seed heads.

Texas native muhly grasses put on a show during late summer and autumn, from pink plumes of Gulf Muhly to the stunning white of Bamboo Muhly and Lindheimer's Muhly (Muhlenbergia lindheimeri). This sun and semi-shade-tolerant species grow 3-5 feet tall and add soft hues with purplish-pink flowers opening in October.

Maiden grass (Miscanthus sinensis 'Gracillimus') is an attractive low-growing ornamental grass that forms 5-foot tall mounds of foliage in late summer and features coppery flower heads in late summer. As winter sets in, its golden straw color persists even when other plants have finished blooming.

Finally, with its long plumes, Pampas grass (Cortaderia selloana) can grow as high as 8 feet. However, there is a dwarf version known as Cortaderia selloana 'Pumila' that grows 4 to 6 feet with 6- to 7-foot flower plumes and can be used instead of Pampas grass for screening in places with limited space where low-maintenance plants are preferred.

texas sign

Grow Native and Naturalized Plants

Make your flower garden in Texas more eco-friendly by growing plants native to your region. These species have been adapted to local soil and climate conditions, requiring less watering and pesticides while growing more robustly than non-native species.

Texas boasts some of the most stunning and effortless-to-grow flowers. These native species offer us a special sense of place that only regional plants can provide.

Before planting natives in Texas, assessing your property's conditions is important. This includes soil type and drainage. With that information, you can begin selecting plants best suited for your landscape.

Many garden centers and dirt yards sell soil mixes too rich in manure and organic matter for most natives, so request a custom mix with less organic material and more hummus. When possible, use compost or another soil amendment to replicate as closely as possible the conditions of your area's native flora.

When planting natives in Texas, one important factor to consider is sun and shade. Most plants that thrive under Texas' summer sun require approximately six hours of direct sunlight daily.

As a general guideline, plant annuals in full sun and perennials in part shade. Selecting the appropriate plants will result in more vibrant flowers and healthier gardens that produce more produce.

Take Advantage of The Seasons

Texas is an ideal gardening destination, with moderate temperatures and plenty of sunshine throughout the year. But that doesn't guarantee lush and blooming flowerbeds all year round without some effort - fortunately, several flowers and other plants will thrive in our humid Texas climate.

The great thing about container gardens is they're incredibly easy to grow and don't require traditional gardens' time or money. All it takes is some strategic planting in the right places at the right times, reviving your favorite annuals while keeping your flowerbeds looking their best into the next gardening season!

It's wise to try at some annuals yearly to maintain your yard's aesthetic. For best results, plant one new flower each season and avoid having an untidy lawn. Additionally, providing plants with essential nutrients like compost will not only boost their return on investment for your flower garden but also enhance the quality of produce when harvest time arrives.

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Table of Contents
  1. Flower Gardening in Texas
    1. Annuals / Perennials
    2. Shrubs
    3. Roses
    4. Grasses
    5. Grow Native and Naturalized Plants
    6. Take Advantage of The Seasons