13 Lovely Red Annual Flowers

Incorporate red into your garden beds and borders with annual flower picks for every season.

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©2011, Dorling Kindersley Limited

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©2012, Dorling Kindersley Limited

Zinnias are All-Star Annuals

Zinnias come in a wide variety of colors with large, profuse blooms. They are truly an easy to grow annual flower. Zinnia offers many colors and mixed blooms from which to choose.

Oriental Poppy ‘Flamenco Dancer’

'Flamenco Dancer' poppy unfurls 4- to 6-inch-wide red blossoms with a deep black center in late spring to early summer. Poppies steal the show when they’re in full bloom, but later plants go dormant. Tuck other perennials around these bloomers to avoid bare spots in the garden. Oriental poppies form long taproots that resemble white carrots. Dividing isn’t always successful and is not typically recommended. Plants are hardy in Zones 3 to 7.

Corn Poppy ‘American Legion’ (Papaver rhoeas)

'American Legion' is a Dutch variety dating to 1891. The rich red flower cups boast a white cross inside. Bees can’t resist these blossoms, so make sure you’re not carrying any indoors when you gather flowers. Gather with larkspur and daisies for a Memorial Day bouquet.


If your garden goes weeks at a time without rain, or you have dry soil that won’t hold water, don’t despair. Grow blanketflower or Gaillardia—it thrives on neglect, prefers arid conditions and looks like a party all summer long.

On Fire Flowers

Celosia 'First Flame Red' emerges out of this container and is great in warm conditions. Easy to grow euphorbia 'Glitz' commands prime real estate in the middle of this artful arrangement. The petunia 'Easy Wave Berry Velour', front and center, is easy to grow and blooms in every season.

Cardinal Flower (Lobelia cardinalis)

This stunner haunts moist, shady woodland areas and attracts hummingbirds for miles around. Maybe that intoxicating quality is what inspired early native Americans to make love potions from its roots.

Petunia 'Cha-Ching-Cherry'

Bright, bold pinks are trending in 2014. Petunia 'Cha-Ching-Cherry' is a new introduction featuring cherry-red blooms with creamy-yellow stars in their throats. The plants have a mounding growth habit, so they're great for containers, but can also spill over the sides of baskets and window boxes. Grow them in part to full sun.

Papaver Rhoeas Bright Red Field Poppies

Papaver rhoeas, common poppy, is an erect annual, with pinnately lobed oblong leaves and solitary, bright scarlet bowl shaped flowers in summer. They add a splash of color in a sunny area of the garden.

Red Wonder Nasturtium Blooms and Leaves are Edible

Red Wonder nasturtiums are flowering, structured, frost tender annuals with trailing growth habit. It has showy, large, dark red flowers and green foliage. The leaves and flowers are both edible.

Geraniums Flower Continuously Summer Until Frost

The geranium, zonal, is an annual flower named for the horseshoe shaped band of dark color in the leaves of most varieties. They are upright bushes covered with colorful flowers on long stems held above the plant giving a burst of color.

Pretty Producers

With nasturtium, some climb while others scramble. All grow vigorously and produce masses of red, orange, or yellow flowers. Tropaeolum majus; Some climb, while others scramble. All grow vigorously and produce masses of red, orange, or yellow flowers. H 3–10 ft (1–3 m); S 5–15 ft (1.5–5 m).

Empress of India Produces Brilliat Scarlet Flowers

Empress of India nasturtium is a classic hardy annual Victorian nasturtium with dark blue green foliage and brilliant crimson flowers. Suitable for containers. The flowers and leaves are a peppery addition to salads, pastas, or used as a garnish.

'Moulin Rouge'

'Moulin Rouge' geraniums feature bright crimson-red frilled petals. Adds vibrant color to any garden. 

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