Through trial and error, my thumb has become a few shades greener over the years. At least I don't kill all my plants now- only an occasional one that becomes intolerable of our intensive summer heat. I purchased a couple this year with tags that stated "heat and/or drought tolerant" and they already appear to have suffered a heat stroke! And it's still early July! You can bet I'm taking notes so I'll know which ones to avoid for next summer.
Some of my favorites so far this year have been the Million Bells, or Calibrachoa, and Petunias. They are thriving, even after being in my care for a couple of months now! :) These plants were small when purchased, and now they are spilling out of the containers and trailing down the sides. The colorful beauties make a welcoming addition to our front entrance and several visitors have complimented them. Million Bells, which resemble small petunias, come in several colors- violet, blue, pink, red, magenta, yellow, bronze and white. They look great arranged in groups of a single color or blended using 2 or 3 shades together. The bumble bees certainly enjoyed them during early spring.
The Petunias that I planted in late April grew super fast- the photos below were shot six weeks apart. Petunias are pretty, low maintenance and tolerate the heat fairly well...definitely my type of bloom :)
When I saw this hanging basket of purple flowers with lime green borders in the garden center, I knew it would be coming home with me. I knew the flowers were Petunias, but I had never seen this species before. I loved the color combination and the prolific blooms! About 3 feet in diameter when I purchased it, the plant covered much of my trunk space.
A brief research online informed me that they are Pretty Much Picasso Supertunia, a vigorous growing Petunia hybrid which trails up to 3 feet. In only two months, the blooms had already trailed just over 3 feet from the center- a beautiful plant which sits so perfectly on the wooden rail of our front porch!
It's a little too early to add these lovely plants to my "I Survived Summer With Susan" list, but it's looking hopeful ;) We'll see if they continue to thrive through the blazing heat of August...