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Flowers That Grow in Florida Year-Round

Florida is home to many beautiful flowers that can be found blooming throughout the year. In this article, we will talk about flowers that grow in Florida year-round. I will also give the best tips to have these flowers in good condition throughout the year.

Some examples of flowers that grow in Florida year-round include:

  • Blanket flower (Gaillardia spp.)
  • Hibiscus (Hibiscus spp.)
  • Lantana (Lantana spp)
  • Mexican Heather (Cuphea hyssopifolia)
  • Plumbago (Plumbago auriculata)
  • Bougainvillea (Bougainvillea spp.)
  • Ixora (Ixora spp.)
  • Knockout Roses (Knock Out Roses)
  • Gerbera (Gerbera spp.)
  • Firespike (Odontonema cuspidatum)
  • Pentas (Pentas spp.)
  • Vinca (Vinca spp.)
  • Begonia (Begonia spp.)
  • Star Jasmine (Trachelospermum jasminoides)

These flowers can add color and beauty to any garden in Florida. It’s important to note that the specific varieties of flowers that grow well in Florida may vary depending on the region and climate.  In Florida, the USDA hardiness zones range from 8a in the northern part of the state to 11a in the southern part.

Growing Zones in Florida

Florida has a subtropical climate, with warm temperatures year-round. This makes it an ideal location for growing a wide variety of plants. In general, Florida is divided into two main growing zones: northern Florida and southern Florida.

Northern Florida, which includes cities like Jacksonville and Tallahassee, is located in growing zone 8b. This means that plants that are hardy to zones 8b through 11a can be grown in this part of the state. Some common plants that grow well in zone 8b include azaleas, camellias, and citrus trees.

Southern Florida, which includes cities like Miami and Fort Lauderdale, is located in growing zone 10a. This means that plants that are hardy to zones 10a through 11a can be grown in this part of the state. Some common plants that grow well in zone 10a include mangoes, avocado trees, and palm trees.

It’s important to keep in mind that the growing zones in Florida are just a general guide, and actual conditions may vary depending on factors such as soil type and local weather patterns. If you’re planning on growing plants in Florida, it’s always a good idea to do some research to find out which plants are best suited to your specific location.

Blanket flower (Gaillardia spp.)

Gaillardia, similar to gazania, opens its variegated corollas in late spring and prolongs flowering until late fall. It is easy to care for because it does not require much watering and is ideal for use in borders. Its flowers reach 4” (10 cm) in diameter and are usually of several colors in the same flower. This beautiful flower is native to Florida.

The blanket flower is a perennial herbaceous plant that does not exceed 28” (70 cm) in height. The varieties are quite numerous and vary according to the colors of the flower heads. Its leaves are lanceolate and oblong. It is a very compact plant and has good resistance to heat.

blanket flower

Hibiscus (Hibiscus spp.)

Hibiscus is a floral symbol of the tropical islands, very ephemeral, but constantly renewed. The variety of colors is wide so this plant blooms year-round in Florida. Hibiscus is a genus comprising about 200 species and more than 30,000 varieties, shrubs, perennials, or annuals.

Hibiscus is one of the flowers that grow in Florida year-round, thanks to Florida’s mild winters this beautiful plant can survive outdoors without any risk. It can grow up to 6.5 ft (2 m) high in pots and up to 16 ft (5 m) when grown directly in the ground, so it is necessary to adapt the size of the pot to the desired development.

I recommend our article about how and when to prune hibiscus in Florida, so you can give the proper care to the Hibiscus. The outdoor location for hibiscus should be sunny or semi-shaded, but bright and with periods of direct sun, ideally in the morning.

hibiscus flowers that grow in florida year round

Lantana (Lantana spp)

Lantana is an evergreen or semi-evergreen shrub (depending on the climatic zone), belonging to the “verbenacee” family. It is native to the warmer areas of America and offers large blooms throughout the year in Florida with beautiful shades of yellow-orange, red, bright, or purple tones.  It is an ideal plant for both containers and flowerbeds, it is undemanding and easy to maintain.

The main peculiarity of lantana is the variety of flower colors on the same plant and how they tend to change tones as the days go by. Its flowers appear in spring and last until late autumn. Its leaves can be light or dark green, depending on the variety.

The genus includes just over 150 species, the best-known being Lantana ‘Camara’ and Lantana ‘Montevidensis’. Learn more about how to propagate lantana.

lantana spp florida

Mexican Heather (Cuphea hyssopifolia)

Mexican Heather (Cuphea hyssopifolia) is a perennial plant that produces small flowers, which can be purple or white. It is a fairly hardy plant, and very suitable for growing in Florida gardens, along with other plants. So, color contrast is produced since the flowers are very showy.

Compact size, barely reaching more than half a meter in height, and very branched, with a woody appearance. It is very suitable for gardens and yards, not only because of its size but also because it supports pruning quite well. A perfect plant for outdoors, as it tolerates full sun exposure.

This plant in spring, and therefore also in summer, needs fairly abundant watering. Reducing so in the rest of the year, since the winter season can withstand a few days of drought.

mexican heather flowers that grow in florida year round

Plumbago (Plumbago auriculata)

The soft blue color of its flowers makes Plumbago one of the flowers that grow in Florida year-round. In addition, the so-called leadwort or plumbago can bloom all year round, except in winter, in areas where temperatures drop below 20 °F (-7 °C). It is one of the many species native to the Cape region of South Africa that live well in the Mediterranean and withstand drought and even sea breezes. Plumbago is low-maintenance and fast-growing.

Leadwort grows well in the sun and tolerates semi-shade in exchange for fewer flowers. The substrate should be light, well-drained, and fairly deep, as it will elongate the roots in search of water; it can be calcareous. Plumbago prefers long and spaced watering and does not tolerate waterlogging.

plumbago auriculata

Bougainvillea (Bougainvillea spp.)

Its sumptuous color palette evokes the shores of the Mediterranean where these climbing shrubs are used to cover walls and low facades. Bougainvillea is a shrub of the Nyctaginaceae family and genus Bougainvillea and is native to Brazil.

They are climbing plants with woody stems that “lean” on the support, either a wall or a fence and although we must help them at the beginning, in warm climates and depending on the variety, they can reach 10 to 26 ft (3 to 8 meters) in height and there are other much smaller varieties.

Pink, red, purple, orange, yellow, or white, Bougainvillea blooms from late spring to early fall. But these are flowers that grow in Florida year-round. It is not very demanding on soil quality, only clay soils are rejected. These shrubs do best in deep, well-drained soils and are preferably rich in humus.

bougainvillea spp flowers

Ixora (Ixora spp.)

The Ixora is a genus of shrubby plants belonging to the Rubiaceae family. It is a shrub from the tropical areas of Asia, known for its brightly colored flowers. It is widely used as a small hedge or as an indoor plant, where it can reach one meter in height. Florida’s climate is ideal for these flowers to grow all year round.  

If used as a hedge, Ixora should be planted in places not exposed to cold or wind, and the roots should be protected with a layer of pine bark, for example. The Ixora needs abundant humidity and temperatures above 59 °F (15 °C).

They produce large globose inflorescences that resemble those of the hydrangea. The inflorescences are terminal, consisting of flowers of variable color from pink, to red, to yellow, to salmon depending on the variety, associated with corymbs containing 10 to 50 flowers.

ixora flowers that grow in florida year round

Knockout Roses (Knock Out Roses)

Knockout roses are one of the hardest roses you can have in a garden. These roses are hardier than other rose varieties, they can tolerate cold, drought, and pests better than other rose varieties. Knockout roses do very well year-round in Florida.

Plant your roses in an area that receives at least 6 hours of sunlight per day. Water your roses regularly, making sure to provide enough moisture to keep the soil evenly moist. Avoid over-watering, as this can lead to root rot. Fertilize your roses regularly with a balanced fertilizer, such as a 10-10-10 formula. Apply the fertilizer according to the instructions on the packaging. Learn more about how to care Knockout Roses.

knockout roses florida

Gerbera (Gerbera spp.)

Gerbera comes in many varieties, some of which are easier to propagate than others. One of the most popular Gerbera varieties grown in gardens is Gerbera jamesonii or Barberton daisy, which can be propagated in a variety of ways.

The ideal soil for your gerberas should be deep, well-aerated, and with guaranteed good drainage. Therefore, a substrate with a large amount of organic matter and few rocks is the most recommended. If the soil does not drain well and the water is constantly waterlogged, you run a great risk of suffocation of the plant and fungal infections.

Gerberas need a semi-warm climate with temperatures not exceeding 72 °F (22 °C) but not dropping below 50 °F (10 °C) either. They should be protected from extreme heat in summer and from frost and cold currents in winter. That is why gerberas are flowers that grow in Florida year-round.

gerbera florida

Firespike (Odontonema cuspidatum)

Firespike is native to Mexico, but was introduced to Florida and is widely distributed throughout the state of Florida. Thanks to Florida’s excellent climate you can plant Firespike all year round. This plant can grow 4 to 6 ft (1.2 to 1.8 meters) tall and produces beautiful red flowers.

In South Florida, you can see the Firespike in bloom all year round. According to an article from the University of Florida, Firespike tolerates different types of soils, such as acidic or clay soils. Place this beautiful plant in full sun for proper development and beautiful flowers throughout the year.

fire spike flowers that grow in florida year round

Pentas (Pentas spp.)

This perennial plant native to Yemen and East Africa is ideal to fill with colored garden beds or terrace planters. In warm or temperate climate zones, it can flower most of the year, even in winter.

From mid-spring, it incessantly generates red, crimson, magenta, pink, mauve, or white corymbs. The flowers are small bells that open into five petals (hence the name) ending in a point; in some cultivars, the center may be lighter or darker. Its nectar attracts butterflies and bees.

Pentas need a lot of sun to flower generously; they can also adapt to partial shade, although they will give fewer flowers. They must be protected from frost. They require a well-drained substrate; if it is rich and fertile, so much the better. Pentas are other flowers that grow in Florida year-round.

pentas flowers florida

Vinca (Vinca spp.)

Vinca is a plant with simple flowers and bright colors. Each year new varieties are released, improving their sprouting capacity, flower size, and variety of colors. The substrate indicated in this case is a “universal substrate” or “substrate for outdoor plants”, although it is also possible to use, given its hardiness, a “substrate for indoor plants”, with a pH between 5.5 and 6.5.

The ideal temperatures are between 57 and 64 °F (14 to 18 °C) during the night and 77 to 86 °F (25 to 30 °C) during the day. Below these temperatures, its development will slow down, and above them, it will accelerate, in both cases, its growth will not be ideal. The most common pests that can occur are thrips, aphids, and caterpillars. Learn more about how to care for Vinca flowers.

vinca flowers florida

Begonia (Begonia spp.)

Begonia, a member of the begonia family, has brightly colored flowers ranging from white to red, orange, yellow, and pink. Colors not included in the range are blue and mauve. Its foliage also presents a wide range of colors and shapes. Learn more about Pink Begonia Maculata.

Some begonias are pendulous, while others have an upright habit that is more suitable for flowerbeds. Begonias are slightly sunny or even semi-shaded places. Tuberous begonias prefer shade. In addition, they like light soil, rich in humus, and with good drainage.

begonia flowers that grow in florida year round

Star Jasmine (Trachelospermum jasminoides)

Trachelospermum jasminoides (= Rhynchospermum jasminoides) is often confused with the various species of jasmine used in the garden, but it does not even belong to the same botanical family. Trachelospermum jasminoides, or Star Jasmine, belongs to the Apocynaceae family, while true Jasmines belong to the Oleaceae family.

Although its origin is in China and Japan, its use has spread throughout America and Europe because it is a climber that adapts to different light conditions and is also low maintenance. This is another flower that grows in Florida year-round and I recommend it to everyone.

Its growth is slow in the first years, and it is advisable to protect it the first year from frost, although it is resistant to them and as an adult, it can withstand temperatures as low as 14 °F (-10 °C). Once established, it will grow rapidly and constantly, especially in summer.

star jasmine flowers florida

Final Conclusions

Many flowers grow in Florida year-round and will add beautiful, cheerful colors to your garden. When choosing any of these plants you must make sure that the soil and sun conditions are adequate so that they can develop properly throughout the year.

I hope this article about flowers that grow in Florida all year round will be of great help, and you will have a beautiful garden all year round. I recommend our article about Golly flower.

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About Henry Morgan

Henry Morgan is an agronomist horticulture founder of The Garden Style Company and The Garden Style Website. He previously worked for Mondelēz International as an Agronomist Engineer specializing in agricultural products management in highly populated areas. In 2000, Henry started working with farmer-producers in agricultural businesses selling wholesale fresh produce and retail plants in Van Buren, Arkansas. Nowadays, Henry lives in California, where he offers expert consulting services for organic vegetable gardening. As a science writer working with his wife, Julia, Henry shares his passion for gardening and farming, trying to reach and teach as many folks as possible.

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