The Q&A Archives: Heat Loving Plants for Containers

Question: I live in the city of Baltimore, and being a renter rather than an owner, I have only a very small area where I can put containers and window boxes. Unfortunately, this area is on a black metal sideporch where it gets lots of morning and hot, hot afternoon sun. My containers are both plastic and clay, and I do have them propped up so they are not resting directly on the metal porch. My problem is that I have not been successful in picking the proper flowers that will do well in the hot sun. Can you make suggestions to me about types of flowers (and combinations thereof) I can use in containers that will look great and thrive in the sun at the same time?

Answer: Indeed I can -- portulaca (moss rose) and zinnias comes in an array of bright and pastel shades, and thrive in hot, dry conditions. Pentas are another good option. Drape neutral-toned fabric on the stand and walls behind your window boxes. This will shade the heat absorbing black metal, and a neutral shade will reflect less light onto the plants than a white surface.

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