Sure, Atlanta summers can be brutally hot! We’re talking average temperatures in the high 90s and 100s, heat radiating off of concrete and hardscape surfaces. Air conditioning on high. Sweat dripping off of brows the second you walk outside. You get the picture.
But fearing Atlanta’s worst in the summer is no reason to let your commercial landscape become bland and unattractive. You can still have a huge array of summer hues to dress up your property despite the heat.
And we’re not even talking about your most visible areas, like entryways. We’re talking about the hardest to grow areas, like beside hardscapes and in parking lot islands, during the toughest growing conditions of the year.
Here is our list of the top four colorful, drought tolerant flowers we like to install now in Atlanta commercial landscapes. Not only do they withstand the intense heat with low water input and tremendous drought tolerance, but, most importantly, they provide endless, bold bursts of color all summer long.
You could say no annual is more cheerful or easier to grow then the marigold. Marigolds come in yellow, orange and a mosaic of both colors and have double, carnation-like flower heads that produce singly or in clusters, growing from 6 inches to 2 feet tall.
These affordable, hardy flowers are as forgiving as they are pretty. For a drought-resistant, pest-resistant annual, we can place them throughout your commercial landscape and then sit back and watch them keep those warm colors coming all season long.
These small clumps of mini verbena-like flowers are formed in clusters and come in orange, red, yellow, white and purple, but the yellow, red and orange are the hardiest. The hotter it is, the happier these plants are and the more flowers you’ll get.
They grow 1 to 6 feet tall and are drought-tolerant, low-water-use plants that are pest and disease resistant.
Think of them as super tough, super colorful and super cute. In fact, lantana’s only con is that it won’t bloom well unless it’s planted in full, blaring sunlight. How many other flowers do you know that’ll do that?
Dense spikes of brightly colored flowers top these 10- to 12-inch tall plants, which hold their color all summer long, no matter the sun and heat. The flowers stack neatly atop light gray-green foliage. We like to use two varieties of salvia—Vista and Victoria.
Vista comes in purple, white, red and salmon, while Victoria comes in white and light blue. In fact, if you want cool blue to add some cool hues to your commercial landscape, salvia fits the bill.
The zinnia is a versatile annual. These velvet, fuzzy-textured flowers range in height from 6 to 36 inches and are available in many different colors—from golden yellow to pumpkin orange to crisp white to baby pink to soft rose. The best part: they grow well under hot, sunny conditions.
Zinnia provide a tremendous bang for your buck in regard to their value in the garden. They even attract bees, butterflies, hummingbirds and birds.
The only con of the zinnia is that it can bleach out in color by the end of summer, becoming more speckled or white in color. This is because zinnias were originally white but over time have mutated to different colors; the mutation wasn’t strong enough, so in enough direct sunlight they can revert back to what they originally were.
The best places to plant these hardiest of summer flowers is in your toughest-to-grow locations. This way you guarantee consistent color throughout the summer for low cost and low inputs. We’re talking about parking lot islands, near dark asphalt or hardscape surfaces, in pots that aren’t frequently watered or in any area lacking irrigation to help offset water costs.
At HighGrove Partners, we know Atlanta growing conditions, and we know our summer color. Trust us to create a colorful palette of vibrant hues that bloom throughout the seasons in your commercial landscape. Give us a call at 678-298-0550, or use our simple contact form.
It’s never too late to get excited about color in your commercial landscape. Let HighGrove commercial landscape design team help you come up with a color plan that has major impact on your property, getting your tenants, customers and visitors talking. For quick reference, check out our infographic on the bold seasonal color below!