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Lantana Flowers Both Practical and Pretty

An excellent low-maintenance plant, lantana flowers come in several colors and will bloom all season long.

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Plant type: Annual or evergreen shrub
Hardiness: USDA Zones 8 to 10

An excellent low-maintenance plant used as an evergreen shrub where it blooms all year long or as an annual in areas with a killing frost. Flowers come in several colors, including red, yellow, pink, orange, purple and multi-colors. Blooms all season long. Foliage is rough and green with some cultivars having variegated foliage. Very drought tolerant. Plant size ranges 1 to 6 feet tall and about 3 to 10 feet wide, depending on cultivar.

How to use it: Plant in mass or as a specimen. As an annual, use in a mixed perennial border, as edging, in containers or hanging baskets or in a butterfly garden. When used as a shrub, plant as a hedge or foundation planting. Can also be used along banks. For a unique tropical effect, interplant lantana with 'Chartreuse' sweet potato vine; the hot colors of the blooms blend well with bright lime green foliage of the vine.

Culture: Likes a moist, well-drained soil, but will tolerate a variety of site conditions. Doesn't perform well in a wet site. Plant in full sun. Benefits by occasional fertilization. Primarily propagated through cuttings or seed. No serious problems with pests or diseases.

Special notes: Attracts wildlife, including butterflies. May be poisonous to pets. Deer resistant. Drought resistant. Tolerates salt spray. Warning: Lantana can be potentially invasive in warm and tropical climates where it isn't killed back by frost. Considered an invasive weed in Hawaii.

Selected species and cultivars

 

  • Lantana camara. A more frost resistant cultivar, 'Miss Huff' features orange and pink flowers and has a tremendous growth habit, reaching 3 to 5 feet tall and up to 10 feet wide. Sterile so it won't produce any offspring seedlings. Hardy to Zone 7.

     

  • Weeping lantana (L. montevidensis). A trailing groundcover type excellent for use in hanging baskets or containers. Flowers are white to lavender purple. Trails about 5 to 6 feet. Native to South America.

     

  • Lantana hybrids. Crosses between L. camara and L. montevidensis. 'Lemon Swirl' has yellow variegated foliage complemented by lemon yellow flowers. Reaches about 1 foot tall. 'New Gold' offers brilliant golden yellow flowers in a profusion over dark green foliage. An excellent performer in the garden. Sterile. 'Confetti' produces multicolored blooms in colors of yellow, pink and purple.

     

  • Lavender popcorn (L. trifolia). Has beautiful lavender purple flowers that are attractive on their own. But even better, the blooms are followed by striking bright purple fruit which resemble ears of corn. Tall, shrubby plants reach 3 feet tall and as wide.
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