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Colorful Plants for Coral Gables Landscape Designs

Colorful plants add beauty and visual interest to a space. In addition to adding visual interest, the use of colorful plants in South Florida can also attract pollinators such as bees and butterflies, which can support the local ecosystem. Incorporating color into a south Florida landscape can be achieved through the use of flowering plants, shrubs, and trees. In this blog post we will cover four of favorite plants to use in Coral Gables Landscape Designs.

Bougainvillea - Bougainvillea spp.

The ultimate vining shrub, Bougainvillea will add magnificent color to any landscape design in Coral Gables. It needs full sun and regular pruning to thrive.

Landscape Design Weston

Planting: Only plant in full sun and dry, well-draining soils. Bougainvillea will not produce flowers in the shade and will instead become a thorny mess. Plant with slow-release fertilizer. If planted in the ground place at least 5 feet away from any structure and other plants. Water thoroughly immediately after planting and then let the soil dry completely before watering again.

Care: Bougainvillea does best when their soil is a little dry, so make sure you don’t overwater it. It should be trimmed after each bloom cycle and then fertilized. Trim the branches 6 to 8 inches from the tip.

Use: We prefer to plant Bougainvillea in a large pot with a trellis so it can create a wall of color wherever needed. This setup also makes trimming easier. If planted in the ground we like to minimize the vegetation around it to make it really stand out.

Candy Apple Bromeliad - Neoregelia 'Candy Apple'

An elegant low-maintenance plant that is sure to add an air of sophistication to any Coral Gables Landscape Design.

Landscape Design Weston

Planting: Can adapt to full sun or full shade, though it will be more colorful in brighter conditions. Imperial bromeliad will rot and die when placed in a wet area so ensure soil is well draining.

Care: Bromeliads need very little attention once established. There is no need for fertilization or pruning. An imperial bromeliad will produce offspring and die within 2-4 years, by which time the offspring will be about half the size of the original plant. You can replace the original plant with the offspring.

Use: We like to use Imperial Bromeliad in areas that do not receive too much sun or under large trees or palms. They stand out most when placed in the front of a garden bed. Given their love of moisture they are an excellent plant to place near pools.

Banana Croton - Codiaeum variegatum 'Banana'

Crotons are tropical low-maintenance evergreen shrubs. The banana croton is smaller than most crotons, making it an ideal accent plant for smaller spaces in your Coral Gables Landscape Design.

Landscape Design Davie

Planting: Banana croon can be placed as close as 2 feet apart. They can adapt to partial shade or full sun but do best in bright but indirect sun. Place in area that is well draining but does not dry out too quickly. Crotons are prone to root rot when left in moist conditions.

Care: Keep soil moist but do not overwater. Fertilize banana croton three times a year (spring, summer, autumn) with slow-release fertilizer. It does not require frequent pruning and is mostly pest resistant.

Use: Banana croton looks best when grown in groups at the edge of a garden bed or surrounding large trees or palms. Its yellow leaves make it a nice contrast to darker foliage. Banana croton is also an excellent indoor plant when given enough light.

Swamp Sunflower (Helianthus angustifolius)

Sunflowers are not only beautiful; they are remarkably easy to grow. Our favorite is the swamp sunflower (Helianthus angustifolius), a native sunflower species that will keep pollinators buzzing.

South Florida Landscape Design

Planting: Can grow in a variety of soils, including those that don’t drain too well. It can spread rapidly through underground stems, so place in an area where it will room to grow. Plant at any time except January, as they may struggle to become established in the cold.

Care: A Florida native, the swamp sunflower requires very little care once established. They do not require fertilization or watering. Prune to keep it tidy. It is susceptible to spittle bugs and powdery mildew, though they rarely cause extensive damage.

Use: Is great as a focal point in a perennial bed. Also performs well along borders, such as fence lines. It might be the best Coral Gables landscape design option for mass plantings, as it will spread quickly while providing beauty and ecosystem services.


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