The Q&A Archives: Some Heat-Tolerant Perennials

Question: My available planting areas face the north and west and receive full sun most of the day and my west side has the hot humid sun all summer. What can you suggest for my hanging baskets on the west side and for the railing window boxes along my deck? Ihave tried petunias, marigolds, dwarf snapdragons and portulaca. They start out wonderful and then fizzle out in July and August. I live in zone 6. I would also like to plant something other than annuals around my deck. What can you suggest? Lois Carr Vine Grove, KY

Answer: There are many heat tolerant perennials that you could plant. Monarda, (Bee Balm), Rudbeckia (Black-eyed Susan), Phlox, Perennial Salvia, just to name a few. As for your hanging baskets, in the scorching conditions that you describe, any annual will need a lot of extra water. The plants that you have tried should do o.k. with a little extra attention ( i.e.; WATER!). If you are just sick of the same old thing though, try verbena, lantana, Black-eyed Susan vine (Thunbergia alata), or lobelia. Goodluck and don't forget the water!

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