Regions / South

 

Southern states, Southern gardening, Southern garden, Southern Climate, Southern Region

South

Selecting plants suited to the climate of the South region is a key step to success.

Various initiatives have taken place to determine how well plants would withstand the cold winter temperatures (Plant Hardiness Zones) or when plants would start suffering from the heat (Plant Heat Zones).

The South region lies in USDA Plant Hardiness Zones 6-11 and in AHS Heat Zones 2 through 12. With the exception of a few high-elevation areas, most of the South experiences extremely hot summers with high humidity, and mild winters. Because of the intense heat and humidity, perennial gardening is mostly confined to lightly shaded areas.

If you know your hardiness zone and heat zone, find the best plants or exciting garden ideas for your geographic area.




Abies lasiocarpa 'Green Globe' (Alpine Fir)

Abies lasiocarpa ‘Green Globe’ is a semi-dwarf, evergreen conifer of globose habit when young, becoming conical over time, and clothed in a lush foliage of short, soft, green needles. Slow-growing, 3-6 in. per year (7-15 cm), this Alpine Fir is a great choice for foundation plantings or rockeries.

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Abies nordmanniana 'Golden Spreader' (Caucasian Fir)

Stately and elegant, Abies nordmaniana 'Golden Spreader' is a slow-growing evergreen conifer of great beauty, particularly in the winter garden. While this dwarf Nordman fir sports a soft green color in summer and fall, its needles turn bright golden-yellow in winter.

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Abies procera 'Blaue Hexe' (Blue Noble Fir)

Abies procera 'Blaue Hexe' (Blue Noble Fir) is a desirable, dwarf, evergreen conifer forming a flattened globe adorned with short, bright powdery blue needles. Slow-growing, 1.2 in. per year (2-5 cm), this attractive Blue Noble Fir is a great choice for small gardens, containers or rockeries.

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Abies procera 'Glauca' (Blue Noble Fir)

Stately, Abies procera 'Glauca' (Blue Noble Fir) is a large sized conical conifer with short, bright blue-gray needles on both the top and underneath. In fall, eye-catching, large blue cones, up to 9 in. long (25 cm), appear upright on the branches before turning reddish brown over time.

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Abutilon 'Lucky Lantern Red' (Flowering Maple)

Noted for its long flowering season and compact size, Abutilon 'Lucky Lantern Red' (Flowering Maple) is a dwarf, bushy, rounded, semi-evergreen shrub bearing large, pendent, brilliant red, bell-shaped flowers. Blooming for weeks from summer to frost (and almost year-round in warm climates), they decorate the plant with a profusion of eye-catching, lantern-shaped blossoms which attract butterflies and hummingbirds. The pretty flowers stand out against the fresh green foliage of maple-like leaves that line the gracefully arching branches.

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Abutilon 'Lucky Lantern Tangerine' (Flowering Maple)

Noted for its long flowering season and compact size, Abutilon 'Lucky Lantern Tangerine' (Flowering Maple) is a dwarf, bushy, rounded, semi-evergreen shrub bearing large, pendent, soft tangerine, bell-shaped flowers. Blooming for weeks from summer to frost (and almost year-round in warm climates), they decorate the plant with a profusion of eye-catching, lantern-shaped blossoms which attract butterflies and hummingbirds. The pretty flowers stand out against the fresh green foliage of maple-like leaves that line the gracefully arching branches.

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Abutilon 'Lucky Lantern White' (Flowering Maple)

Noted for its long flowering season and compact size, Abutilon 'Lucky Lantern White' (Flowering Maple) is a dwarf, bushy, rounded, semi-evergreen shrub bearing large, pendent, pure white, bell-shaped flowers. Blooming for weeks from summer to frost (and almost year-round in warm climates), they decorate the plant with a profusion of eye-catching, lantern-shaped blossoms which attract butterflies and hummingbirds. The pretty flowers stand out against the fresh green foliage of maple-like leaves that line the gracefully arching branches.

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Abutilon 'Lucky Lantern Yellow' (Flowering Maple)

Noted for its long flowering season and compact size, Abutilon 'Lucky Lantern Yellow' (Flowering Maple) is a dwarf, bushy, rounded, semi-evergreen shrub bearing large, pendent, soft lemon-yellow, bell-shaped flowers. Blooming for weeks from summer to frost (and almost year-round in warm climates), they decorate the plant with a profusion of eye-catching, lantern-shaped blossoms which attract butterflies and hummingbirds. The pretty flowers stand out against the fresh green foliage of maple-like leaves that line the gracefully arching branches.

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Abutilon 'Souvenir de Bonn' (Flowering Maple)

Abutilon 'Souvenir de Bonn' (Flowering Maple) is a large, upright, evergreen shrub bearing a profusion of pendent, salmon-pink, bell-shaped flowers, up to 2.5 in long (6 cm), adorned with dark red veining. Resembling Chinese lanterns, they dangle like porcelain earrings from the branches. Blooming for months from spring to fall (all year long in frost free areas), they attract butterflies and hummingbirds. Equally beautiful, the variegated foliage of large, maple-like, dark green leaves features showy, creamy edges.

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Abutilon 'Victor Reiter' (Flowering Maple)

Very floriferous, Abutilon 'Victor Reiter' (Flowering Maple) is an upright, evergreen shrub or small tree bearing a profusion of huge, outward facing, soft tangerine, bell-shaped flowers, up to 3 in. across (7 cm). Resembling miniature pumpkins in buds, they open to form hibiscus-like flowers and dangle like porcelain earrings from the gracefully arching branches. Blooming for months from spring to fall, they attract butterflies and hummingbirds. The pretty blossoms stand out nicely against the lush foliage of shiny, maple-like, dark green leaves.

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Abutilon megapotamicum 'Variegatum' (Trailing Abutilon)

Spectacular, Abutilon megapotamicum 'Variegatum' (Trailing Abutilon) is a semi-evergreen shrub bearing pendent, bell-shaped flowers, 2 in. across (5 cm), adorned with a red calyx protecting its yellow petals. Blooming for weeks from summer to frost, they decorate the plant with a profusion of blossoms resembling Chinese lanterns. Butterflies and hummingbirds feast on them. Providing a neat contrast, the variegated foliage of heart-shaped, slender pointed leaves is flecked with golden yellow spots and lines the gracefully arching branches.

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Abutilon megapotamicum (Trailing Abutilon)

Vigorous, Abutilon megapotamicum (Trailing Abutilon) is a semi-evergreen shrub bearing pendent, bell-shaped flowers, 2 in. across (5 cm), adorned with a red calyx protecting its yellow petals. Blooming for weeks from summer to frost, they decorate the plant with a profusion of blossoms resembling Chinese lanterns. Butterflies and hummingbirds feast on them. The foliage of heart-shaped, slender pointed leaves lines the gracefully arching branches.

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Abutilon pictum 'Thompsonii' (Painted Abutilon)

Highly popular, Abutilon pictum 'Thompsonii' (Painted Abutilon) is a vigorous, upright, evergreen shrub or small tree bearing a profusion of showy, salmon-pink, bell-shaped flowers. Resembling Chinese lanterns, they dangle like porcelain earrings from extraordinarily long stalks. Blooming for months from spring to fall (all year long in frost free areas), they attract butterflies and hummingbirds. The variegated foliage of shiny, maple-like, dark green leaves is speckled with yellow and lines the arching branches.

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Abutilon striatum (Red Vein Indian Mallow)

Spectacular-looking, Abutilon striatum (Red Vein Indian Mallow) is an evergreen shrub bearing a profusion of showy, orange, bell-shaped flowers, 2 in. across (5 cm), adorned with prominent crimson veining. Resembling Chinese lanterns, they dangle like porcelain earrings from extraordinarily long stalks. Blooming for months from spring to fall (all year long in frost free areas), they attract butterflies and hummingbirds.The foliage of shiny, maple-like, dark green leaves lines the strongly upright branches.

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Acanthus 'Whitewater' (Bear's Breech)

Luminous and vigorous, Acanthus 'Whitewater' (Bear's Breech) is a clump-forming perennial boasting a gorgeous variegated foliage of large, deeply cut, dark-green leaves adorned with creamy-white margins and splashes. In summer, the foliage mound is topped by erect flower stems bearing pink and cream, funnel-shaped flowers with hood-like purple bracts.

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Acanthus hungaricus (Bear's Breech)

Stately and dramatic, Acanthus hungaricus (Bear's Breech) is an upright, clump-forming perennial boasting strikingly elegant spikes of hooded, pink-flushed to white flowers adorned with spiny, red-purple bracts. Blooming from early to mid-summer, they rise well above a superb foliage mound of long, shiny, deeply-cut, basal olive-green leaves, which usually remains attractive throughout the growing season.

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Acanthus mollis 'Morning's Candle' (Bear's Breech)

Very floriferous, Acanthus mollis 'Morning Candle' (Bear's Breech) is a semi-evergreen, clump-forming perennial boasting strikingly elegant spikes of hooded, pure white flowers adorned with prickly purple bracts. Blooming from mid to late summer, they rise well above a superb foliage mound of large, shiny, deeply-cut, dark green leaves.

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Acanthus mollis 'Rue Ledan' (Bear's Breech)

Luminous and floriferous, Acanthus mollis 'Rue Ledan' (Bear's Breech) is a clump-forming perennial boasting strikingly elegant spikes of hooded, pure white flowers adorned with green bracts. Blooming from early summer to early fall, they rise well above a superb foliage mound of large, shiny, deeply-cut, dark green leaves.

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Acanthus mollis (Bear's Breech)

Stately and vigorous, Acanthus mollis (Bear's Breech) is a semi-evergreen clump-forming perennial boasting strikingly elegant spikes of hooded, creamy-white flowers adorned with dusky purple bracts. Blooming from early to mid-summer, they rise well above a superb foliage mound of large, shiny, deeply-cut, dark green leaves.

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Acanthus spinosus (Armed Bear's Breech)

Statuesque and rewarding, Acanthus spinosus (Armed Bear's Breech) is an upright, clump-forming perennial boasting a profusion of strikingly elegant spikes of hooded, pure white flowers adorned with spiny, red-purple bracts. Blooming from early to late summer, they rise well above a superb foliage mound of large, shiny, deeply-cut, spine-tipped, dark green leaves

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Acer griseum (Paperbark Maple)

Noted for its exfoliating bark and showy fall color, award-winning Acer griseum (Paperbark Maple) is a small spreading deciduous tree that is highly desirable. The chestnut-brown bark of both its trunk and branches constantly peels into thin, tight curls, revealing brighter cinnamon-red wood beneath.

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Acer japonicum 'Aconitifolium' (Full Moon Maple)

Incredibly popular, award-winning Acer japonicum 'Aconitifolium' (Full Moon Maple) is a large bushy deciduous shrub or small tree with attractive foliage and stunning fall color. Emerging bright green in spring, the palmate, almost fern-like leaves are deeply cut into 7-11 lobes. One of the most desirable features of this cultivar is its intense fall coloration, when the leaves develop brilliant scarlet and carmine tones tinged with purple. Since they persist a long time on the plant, they provide a long-lasting fall display.

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Acer japonicum 'Green Cascade' (Full Moon Maple)

Noted for its unique habit, award-winning Acer japonicum 'Green Cascade' (Full Moon Maple) is a small mounded tree of graceful, weeping or pendulous habit. Emerging rich emerald green in spring, the palmate, finely-dissected, lacylike leaves are deeply cut into 9-11 lobes. In the fall, the foliage turns brilliant shades of yellow, orange and crimson. An exceptional landscape specimen tree.

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Acer japonicum 'Vitifolium' (Full Moon Maple)

Noted for its leaves resembling those of grapes, award-winning Acer japonicum 'Vitifolium' (Full Moon Maple) is a large bushy deciduous shrub or small tree of upright habit, becoming broad and rounded with age. Emerging bronze in spring, the large, rounded, palmate leaves mature to deep green as the season progresses. In fall, they turn magnificent shades of gold, crimson and vivid scarlet before dropping, making this small, dense maple really stand out in the landscape.

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