Jump to content
Search In
  • More options...
Find results that contain...
Find results in...

April Landscapes – Top 5 Spring Flowers!


Recommended Posts

April is here! Now you can finally sink your hands in the dirt again!

April is finally here and thats a big deal here in North Texas. April’s arrival gives us the green light to do a lot of things in our lawns and landscapes. By normal standards, April 1 is when we can assure ourselves we’ve seen the last frost/freeze of the year.

With April’s arrival, you can finally apply that weed/feed or fertilizer you’ve been chomping at the bit to put down. Remember, you shouldn’t put it down until your grass is actually growing and you’re having to mow. If you apply prior to that, it could disrupt the natural process. We’re the ones who use a calendar. Mother Nature does not.

In general, when temperatures are no longer in the 40s at night, your turf will begin growing again.

Another landscape task we’ve all been waiting for is the planting of the spring flowers. We warned against planting them in March and good thing as we had a cold blast here in DFW only a week or so ago.

Let’s start the flower talk off with a list of the top 5 annuals and perennials, shall we?



1. Vinca (Periwinkles) – Ve ry adaptable annual which will last an entire Texas summer. It can grow in part shade, sunny with some shade, or full sun. Remember, the more sun, the more the blooms. Vinca will grow from 8 inches to 1 foot high, depending on the conditions. The are profuse bloomers in full sun situations and will come in pink, purple, red, white and magenta. Vinca does not require “deadheading” the blooms, making it an ideal low maintenance choice for the garden.


2. Begonias – Another great, adaptable annual that will endure our long, hot summers here in Texas. Begonias really only want two things and lots of it – water and sun. Their flowers are small, but in mass they are impressive. Begonias will only get 6-8 inches tall and come in both pink, red and white. The annual Begonia we commonly see in our landscapes are called “Wax Begonias” because of their glossy leaves. They work great in partial sun or full sun. They have almost no insect or disease issues and they grow just was easily in pots as they do in the beds. They also attract hummingbirds and butterflies.



3. Wave or Tidal Wave Petunias – Part of the criteria for being on this list is the ability to last the season here. Most varieties of Petunias do not qualify for that reason. However, the Wave or Tidal Wave Petunias can. Petunias are beloved for their large, striking and colorful blooms. The same blooms we love so much for those reasons are found on the Wave Petunias. These guys will get large, too. They can grow to 24 inches tall and four feet wide, growing in a spreading fashion. Wave Petunias are not as drought tolerant as other spring selections, but they do as well in pots and hanging baskets as they do in the landscape.


4. Black Foot Daisy – In Central and Southern Texas, you might see these make the perennial list. But they so seldom make it through a North Texas winter, I’ve included them in the annual list here. They are so impressive and showy, you just can’t leave them out. Black Foot Daisies start out as small 1 gallon (or smaller) plants but will quadruple their size over a growing season. When planted in full or partial sun, they will be covered in their nickel sized white blooms.


5. Pentas – Clusters of red or white flowers and with deep green foliage make this an attractive option for the spring garden. They will remain strong through a Texas summer and will grow to about 15 inches high and about 8 inches wide. They look great planted in mix formations or in solid color groupings. They will do fine in partial sun or full sun locations and look great when mixed with other spring flowers.

Honorable Mention

6. Purple Fountain Grass – How can an ornamental grass make a flower list, you say? I think these guys demand it. They are a muted dark purple all the season and grow up cat tail like fronds with soft hues of purple in them. They compliment the annual flowers because they are taller than the rest and give the bed some height variation in the display and texture. Healthy specimens will require trimming by mid-summer as they out layers of the plant will begin to lay down. 



1. Daylilies – Day lilies head this list because they are such prolific growers, they multiply, and are faithful bloomers. Not all day lilies are built the same though and its important to note the distinction. Some day lily varieties are absolutely breathtaking with their blooms and colors, but the show is short-lived each year. Daylilies also come in early, mid, and late season bloomers. The variety I recommend most for the biggest bang for your buck is the Stella De Oro Day Lily. It will bloom off and on most of the season. Daylilies are incredibly tough. You could drive a car over them and most of them would pop back up soon after. Drought tolerant, can grow in most soils, prolific bloomers – whats not to like?


2. Homestead Verbena – Relentless bloomers combined with drought tolerance give this plant huge appeal in the Texas garden. They will literally bloom non-stop from early summer through fall and do it with very little care requirements. While Verbena is drought tolerant, it blooms best when the soil is kept moderately moist. Verbena can come in white, red, yellow, orange or deep purple colors and will grow to 12 inches high and 3-4 feet across. They are great for planting in planter boxes where they can hang over the side seeking more sunlight. 



3. Four-Nerve Daisy – Talk about bang for your buck, this guy delivers. Blooming from March through October, the Four-Nerve Daisy works well in rock gardens, container gardens or as a border planting. This daisy wants dry, well drained soil making it a great drought tolerant selection, particularly in xeriscape beds. This plant will often times bloom during the winter months in most of Texas. It grows 1’ tall at maturity and about the same in width and prefers full sun. It is also deer resistant.


4. Mexican Petunia – Often also called “Ruellia,” this plant offers several varieties. One will grow to three feet high while the dwarf variety will only grow to 4-6 inches. This is a popular selection for those who love to entertain butterflies, honey bees, hummingbirds to their gardens because of the sweet nectar produced by their blooms. It is also deer resistant. Mexican petunias will spread so plant them in areas that have natural borders to keep them contained. Mulch them as they like their soil to be slightly moist.

5. Canna – So easy to grow and such a beautiful display of flowers they offer! Cannas can grow just about anywhere, but they do best in locations where the soil will remain slightly wet, but in full sun. Remember, the more sun, the more blooms! Cannas have few enemies as far as insects or diseases go. Different varieties offer dark green, striped orange, dark purple (black) and bronze leaves. They don’t get very wide but they will grow to five feet in height. They will do well in a pond garden.


Oxalis – Also called Crimson Clover. This guy is valued not only for its small white blooms in late spring, but also for the deep red/Burgundy foliage it has all summer. A perennial, it prefers shade and filtered sun.

Hostas – These are bulb plants that return each year. It seems as though the harder our winters are, the more vigorous these guys will grow. After all, they do come from The Netherlands. Hostas make great shade to partial sun plant selections. They will not do well if facing afternoon sun, however. Their big, bold leaves combined with their dainty white flowers (and sometimes lavender) make them very popular. They are easy to grow and take care of.

Caladiums – One plant that’s value is in its leaves, not a bloom. Caladiums offer color every single day and are not restricted to a bloom period. There are some that prefer full sun, but also varieties that thrive in shade and partial sun conditions. In North Texas, the bulbs should be dug up each fall and stored for the winter.

Cordyline – While it prefers sunny locations, it will also do well in partial shade. Its spiked Burgundy look stands out among the rest in the garden. Natives of Australia, they will not survive a North Texas winter. They can be planted in pots and stored indoors for the winter, however.

Hopefully, that will help give you a start for your garden this year. For those who’ve been anxious to get their hands in the dirt, now you can!!

(Mark’s column each month is sponsored by Stagecoach Trailers, Inc., of Naples, Texas. Find them at www.stagecoachtrailers.com)



Link to comment
Share on other sites

Hi Mark

I always enjoy your landscaping thread.  I am in the process of buying a older home which has been neglected for some time.  The yard is filled with weeds & thistles but does have some scattered St Augustine grass.  Would it be better for the first summer to just fertilize & water or try to use some Weed be gone, fertilize & water?  Thank you in advance.


Link to comment
Share on other sites

34 minutes ago, gmcc said:

Hi Mark

I always enjoy your landscaping thread.  I am in the process of buying a older home which has been neglected for some time.  The yard is filled with weeds & thistles but does have some scattered St Augustine grass.  Would it be better for the first summer to just fertilize & water or try to use some Weed be gone, fertilize & water?  Thank you in advance.


You don't want to use WeedBGone on St Augustine. It kills St Aug.

I would simply use a Fertilome St Augustine Weed/Feed. For now, pull the larger weeds. When temperatures are in the 80s-90s consistently, you can spray Celsius WG in St Augustine lawns and kill practically any weed you have (without killing St Augustine).

The Fertilome will knock out the Poa Annua weeds but you'll need help from Celsius to get the rest.

Get Celsius from most any Ewing Irrigation dealer, or SiteOne (formerly John Deere). You can also find it on Amazon.

Fertilome's website has a zip code search feature which will show you the nearest Fertilome dealers near you, based on your zip code. www.fertilome.com


Link to comment
Share on other sites

  • 3 weeks later...

Join the conversation

You can post now and register later. If you have an account, sign in now to post with your account.

Reply to this topic...

×   Pasted as rich text.   Paste as plain text instead

  Only 75 emoji are allowed.

×   Your link has been automatically embedded.   Display as a link instead

×   Your previous content has been restored.   Clear editor

×   You cannot paste images directly. Upload or insert images from URL.


Our Affiliation


Quick Links

  • Create New...