Cool Colorful Plants

These versatile annuals have exploded in popularity in recent years producing months of color from summer into fall. Take a look at some winners for your garden.

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Oakleaf hydrangea 'Pinky Winky' (Hydrangea paniculata 'Pinky Winky'). Named after a character on the popular "Teletubbies" children's show, this deciduous shrub produces two-toned panicles of white and pink from mid-summer into fall. Strong, upright red stems bear impressive 16-inch long flower heads without drooping. Can be pruned to stay small or allowed to reach its mature size of eight feet tall and wide. Tolerant of many climate and soil conditions. USDA Zones 3 to 7.

'Royal Raindrops' crabapple (Malus 'Royal Raindrops'). Profuse clusters of bright rose-pink blossoms appear in mid-spring. The deep purple cut leaf foliage holds its color in summer better than any other crimson-leafed crabapple. Fall color is brilliant orange-red, and the tiny red fruits persist well into winter. Maturing at just 20 feet tall, this deciduous tree is great for small yards. USDA Zones 4-8.