The color show on Russian sage kicks off in midsummer when lavender-purple flowers open. After blossoms fade, a purple bract that holds each bloom remains well into October, giving this plant an apparent flower season that’s months long. ‘Rocketman’ (Perovskia atriplicifolia) has strong, silvery stems that don’t need staking. Russian sage is a drought-tolerant plant that grows best in full sun. Deer- and rabbit-resistant plants grow 30 to 36 inches tall and wide. Hardy in Zones 4-9.
Located in the heart of the ritzy shopping complex The Shops Buckhead, Biltong Bar has added Tiki Tuesday menu to its offerings, with classic drinks like Mai Tais, Fog Cutters and Rum Barrels rounding out the already copious, clever boozy options from beverage director Sean Gleason. This South African gastropub bills itself as "beef jerky and booze" (biltong means beef jerky and is a traditional South African snack) a with Indian, French and Malaysian dishes on offer and a creative bar menu with exotic French-Caribbean sips like a trendy Chartreuse Colada, a mezcal and lavender soda Summer Dresses and other imaginative offerings.
Fuchsia is a showstopper in part to full shade conditions with its dangling, multi-colored flowers. ‘Bellinto Compact Red And Violet’ fuchsia delivers a classic pink and purple color combination in a small plant that’s perfect for pots. Plants grow 8 to 16 inches tall and 10 to 14 inches wide. Look for fuchsia in many different color pairings, including pastel pink and lavender, or white and red. Flowers also come in solid shades, such as orange or deep red. Fuchsia is a hummingbird magnet, so display plants where you can easily view them from indoors to watch the air show.
Candytuft often attracts butterflies with its spring blooms, which can last for weeks. Give your plants a spot in full sun, and avoid heavy soils that stay wet during the winter. The plants grow about 6-12" tall and will slowly spread to make a pretty groundcover (but don't walk on them). Use this evergreen as a border, in a rock garden or let it spill over a wall or from a windowbox. After the flowers die, give the plants, which are hardy in zones 5-9, a light shearing to keep them bushy. 'Lavish,' shown here, has beautiful, deep lavender flowers.
Summer long color is yours when you add ‘Amethyst Pearl’ phlox (Phlox carolina) to your garden. A butterfly favorite, ‘Amethyst Pearl’ opens pale lavender-pink blooms starting in early summer. The show continues until early fall, with blossoms beckoning butterflies, bees and other pollinator insects. If you like gathering garden bouquets, grow this phlox—its flowers look great in a vase. Note that while this beauty looks like old-fashioned garden phlox, it's actually a different species. Be sure to get Phlox carolina if you want a phlox for damp soil. Plants grow 18 inches tall and wide. Hardy in Zones 3-8.
Many clematis breeders call ‘Kilian Donahue’ one of the best bicolor types. Flowers unfurl to reveal ruby red centers that fade to fuchsia at each petal tip. Petal edges are a pretty orchid. As flowers age, they shift to lavender with a pink stripe. Because blossoms change as they fade, when you grow ‘Kilian Donahue,’ it’s like having two different clematis vines growing together. Vines flower strongly all summer long. For best flowering, remove top growth by one-third in early spring. Vines grow 9 to 10 feet tall by 4 feet wide. Hardy in Zones 4 to 10.
One of the most successful ways to keep a muted space from falling flat is to layer in several shades of the same color using pillows and throws. The large-scale butterfly pillow in the armchair has slightly more purple in it than the upholstery fabric, resulting in a subtle, sophisticated layering effect. When layering shades of mauve and lavender, it’s important to stay away from those with beige undertones: they’ll end up reading more in the pink or flesh-tone family.
Bee balm (Monarda didyma) is a buffet of color and activity in the garden, beckoning all kinds of pollinators, including hummingbirds, butterflies and bumblebees. This bloomer kicks off the flower show in midsummer, ultimately sending up multiple flowers from a single stem. It makes a great addition to a bouquet, lasting a week or more in a vase. Bee balm comes in a host of colors, including pink, lavender, purple and red shades. Choose varieties that have good powdery mildew resistance. Look for varieties from short to this average size ‘Raspberry Wine’ bee balm, which grows 36 to 48 inches tall by 18 inches wide. Hardy in Zones 4-8.
It’s tough to beat the floral perfume of lilacs. These flowering shrubs open blooms from late spring to early summer, depending on variety. The blossoms offer traditional colors, like purple, lavender and white. You can also find lilacs with pink, yellow and even bicolor blooms. A few lilacs actually lack fragrance, so it’s important to do your homework before buying a plant. Some of the most fragrant varieties include light blue ‘President Grevy (Zones 3-7, shown), wine-red ‘Congo’ (Zones 4-7), pink ‘Maiden’s Blush’ (Zones 2-7) and white ‘Beauty of Moscow’ (Zones 3-7). Plants grow from shrub to small tree size, reaching from 3 to 15 feet tall. Hardiness depends on variety, from Zones 2-9.
Grow this sweet pea, and it will quickly become your favorite. Why? Extra-early, extra-large, richly fragrant blooms on extra-long stems make ‘Mammoth Mix’ (Lathyrus odoratus) the sweet pea of choice for commercial cut flower growers. This is the sweet pea you want for bouquets. Flower colors include navy blue, rose pink, lavender, crimson and salmon pink. The different flower colors all mature at the same time, letting you make bouquets with every color in the vase. These annual vines grow 6 to 8 feet tall and up to 12 feet wide. Why we love it: These big-flowered beauties are heat-tolerant, which makes for a long flowering season.
Morning glory is the flower of early risers, who get to enjoy these gorgeous blooms at their freshest. ‘Celestial Mix’ features vines that unfurl a trio of stunning flower colors: midnight blue, snow white, and lavender-blue. Each flower features a contrasting star in the center of the bloom. Morning glory climbs by twining. Simply plant it beside a trellis or support, and the vine will do the rest. Nick or soak seeds overnight to aid germination. This annual vine grows 6 to 7 feet tall. Cut down vines after frost and compost or destroy. Doing this helps to minimize potential disease issues. Why we love it: Flowers unfurl like magic each morning, and if you’re patient, you can witness the event.
Individual blossoms on the flower spike of gas plant appear to have eyelashes, thanks to long, curling stamens. Gas plant offers a long flower season, from late spring through midsummer, and you can find varieties with blooms in shades of lavender, pink and red. Once flowers fade, seedpods form that linger into early winter and make a nice addition to autumn arrangements. Site this perennial where you want it (full sun is best), because it doesn’t transplant easily. Small seedlings tend to form around the mother plant, and those can be moved with little fuss. Deer- and rabbit-resistant plants grow 28 to 32 inches tall by 18 to 24 inches wide. Hardy in Zones 3-7. Good vase companions for gas plant: bearded iris, peony, bee balm and lady’s mantle.
It’s tough to beat the floral perfume of lilacs. These flowering shrubs open blooms from late spring to early summer, depending on variety. The blossoms offer traditional colors, like purple, lavender and white, and you can also find lilacs with pink, yellow and even bicolor blooms. A few lilacs actually lack fragrance, so it’s important to do your homework before buying a plant. Some of the most fragrant varieties include wine-red ‘Congo’ (Zones 4-7), pink ‘Maiden’s Blush’ (Zones 2-7), light blue ‘President Grevy' (Zones 3-7) and white ‘Beauty of Moscow’ (Zones 3-7). Plants grow from shrub to small tree size, reaching from 3 to 15 feet tall. Hardiness depends on variety, from Zones 2-9.
Native perennial anise hyssop earns its keep in the garden by filling many roles. Offering beautiful cut flowers is just one of them. Known botanically as Agastache foeniculum, anise hyssop is a strong pollinator plant, bringing bees, butterflies and many beneficial insects to the garden. Leaves can be used to flavor drinks with a hint of anise, and small purple petals offer a burst of licorice flavor. Flower spikes are sturdy and work in a bouquet with or without the actual tiny lavender blooms. They provide structure and a vertical accent in arrangements. Deer-and rabbit-resistant plants grow 24 to 48 inches tall and 18 to 36 inches wide. Hardy in Zones 4-8. Good vase companions for anise hyssop: purple coneflower, echibeckia, hosta, gas plant and garden phlox.