Have you ever wanted to spruce up your patio or garden? If so, you’ll want to start with the best outdoor plants. Not only do these plant varieties add a welcoming touch of nature to your living or recreational spaces, but they’re also a breeze and a joy to care for and grow.
Flex your green thumb by cultivating a wide variety of these plants listed below — all of them offer vibrant color, bloom, and thrive beautifully in pots or containers (even if you have limited space), and could provide a host of potential health benefits.
Why Fill Your Space With Outdoor Plants?
A patio or garden filled with a variety of plants, flowers, and shrubs makes for a calming and relaxing outdoor space. Beautiful plants are soothing to the eye and to the mind, potentially helping you boost your mood or de-stress after a long day. But they’re more than just ambiance — they also serve a practical purpose. Many outdoor plants purify the air and provide afternoon shade, ward off pests or mosquitoes, and even encourage you to eat cleaner or healthier if you choose to plant fruits or vegetables.1
Even tending to low-maintenance plants can help get you off of your couch or out of your home office to move around more. You could also use your outdoor space for some container gardens which help support more sustainable and affordable eating practices.2
Read on for a list of garden plants that can greatly improve your outdoor spaces’ look and ambiance. The beautiful flowers and bright colors of the leaves are well worth the effort of learning the ins and outs of correct soil and drainage and light and shade.
Rose of Sharon
These flowering shrubs offer gorgeous, vibrant leaves and fragrant flowers (that are not roses). They’re relatively low-maintenance and tolerant of many conditions. They can thrive in full sunlight or even indirect light, as long as you keep the soil moist.3
Angel Wing Begonias
These striking blooms do well as indoor plants, but you’re going to want to show them off in your outdoor areas, too, if you can. Their leaves come in interesting shapes and in a variety of colors and patterns. As they are tropical plants that thrive in hot climates, make sure to place them in a spot with bright light. And, if you’ve planted them in a pot or container, you can bring them inside if the temperatures begin to drop.4
True to their name, these plants bloom year after year with the right care and attention. Perennials cover a wide variety of plants that can be drought-tolerant and need only partial sunlight. Soil plays a big part in helping perennials thrive, as it takes time for the roots to establish. As long as you keep your perennial plants watered and with excellent drainage, you’ll have gorgeous flowers coming back every year.
Some popular perennials to consider:
- Hosta: This tropical-looking foliage with white or purple flowers in the summer or fall is perfect for lining your patio.
- Sedum: Pretty clusters of flowers in shades of pink will pop along your patio or in your garden.
- Lupines: These striking, spiky flowers can grow up to five feet tall — perfect for adding height and variation to your garden landscape.
- Daylilies: These gorgeous plants thrive in part-sun or part-shade. With a multitude of varieties, pick your favorites and plant them in clusters.
- Garden Phlox: This perennial won’t let you down, with its remarkably large, bright, fragrant blooms.
- Russian Sage: This flowering perennial can add stunning color to your garden in summer and early fall.
- Coneflowers: Butterflies and birds will love this colorful perennial flower. You can find them in red, purplish-pink, white, orange, or yellow.5,6,7
This eye-catching succulent is pretty and easy to propagate. The ghost plant loves the sun, so keep it in pots out in the open or in bright shade. When it comes to soil, make sure you have good drainage. The best part about the ghost plant is how little watering it needs — natural rainfall can help keep it healthy and thriving.8
These butter-yellow blooms bring cheerful energy to your patio. Plant them during the fall, so you can enjoy fresh flowers in spring. If doing away with container plantings and putting them directly in flower beds, make sure you space them well apart to give them ample room to grow and multiply.9
The abundant foliage of Dead Nettle makes for sprawling ground cover or gently cascading blooms from pots or window boxes. Even with minimal sunlight and watering, these hardy plants let you enjoy silvery leaves that soon turn into dainty purple flowers or white flowers.10
Get Into Gardening With Easy Outdoor Plants
Tending to your own blooms can be a relaxing, fulfilling hobby. But, for best results, make sure you do your research — most urbanized areas have eroded topsoil that can hardly sustain good growth. So, visit garden centers for expert advice on how to mix soil for pots or flower beds, and to learn which plant varieties will work best with your specific area or hardiness zone. While the best varieties of plants may vary across colder climates or warmer ones, you will be sure to find the perfect mix of plants and flowers just right for your garden or patio.
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