It’s that time again! Time for us to do our once a year Blooming Secrets list of our favorite annuals. There are so many beautiful flowers and plants to choose from that it presents our staff with some very challenging decisions. Some of these plants we’ve grown ourselves, a few are new to us and others we have been following as breeders work to lengthen their blooming season and improve their versatility. We’re sure you probably have your favorites too and if you want to add to our list contact us through our website or share them on the Blooming Secrets’ Facebook Page.

Number 5 on our list of top annuals is Sedona Sun Ornamental Peppers.  We first became aware of this plant a few years ago and think it is a great way to add color to your garden. With this plant you get an abundance of bright yellow and orange peppers and adding peppers to your garden can add a unique and spicy accent to your containers and borders.  This plant enjoys full sun and is heat tolerant.  Ornamental Peppers can be eaten but they are grown more for their unique visual impact in your garden rather than their taste.

Can-Can Bumble Bee Pink Calibrachoa is Number 4 on our list.  It received its name because the breeders felt it looked like a Bumble Bee had landed on the flower. This particular variety has a unique flower pattern that is quite eye-catching.  The flower is candy-pink at the petal edges to rosy-pink, with a bold yellow star in the center! Calibrachoa has made our list of top annuals previously because of it is a prolific bloomer. This beautiful flower looks great on its own or try combining it with Verbena, Geraniums, and Petunias for a dynamite container!  

In the middle of our list at Number 3 is Purple Prince Alternanthera.  Alternanthera is a spreading groundcover and this variety has particularly beautiful foliage.  If you are looking to add a darker shade of color to your garden this may be the plant for you. It has rich burgundy-purple colored foliage with a ruby-rose underside. The color grows more intense the more sun the plant gets. The plant requires very little water and is disease resistant. In containers, it can be considered a filler or a spiller.  Purple Prince is somewhat cold sensitive, so it should be planted after the last frost.

Number 2 on our list is the Captain Safari Calla Lily. This bright red-orange flower will be a real stand out in your garden. Calla Lilies have a unique shape and look and are widely used in wedding bouquets. Don’t let its exotic look fool you. This flower is easy to grow and can be planted in the ground or in a container. Calla Lilies are also deer resistant and attract hummingbirds and butterflies. They love the sun but should be kept well-watered. 

And now here is our top selection for the year, Revolution Bicolor Gerbera Daisies. This flower comes in a variety of colors and is the leading pot (container) Gerbera. This flower is easy to grow and they develop flower buds quicker than other varieties of Gerbera.  They can also be grown indoors as well as outdoors.  Its flowers come in bright colors such as orange, red, salmon and yellow. These bright colors look beautiful against the contrasting or lighter colored centers (eyes) of the plant.  The flowers also come in different sizes with Mega (6-inch flowers) and Standard (4-inch flowers) being the most popular. 

Photos Courtesy of Jill Mazur, Ball Seeds, and ibulb.org

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