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Top 5 Annuals in the Midwest


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Verbena
Verbena comes in a variet of colors including white, pink, purple and various shades of blue.
Verbena comes in a variet of colors including white, pink, purple and various shades of blue.
iStockphoto.com/Terraxplorer

­If you're looking for a single flower type to cover a multitude of your yard's needs, look no further than the Verbena. In need of a trailing flower for your rock garden or to drape over a trellis, Verbena's a good choice, growing to a diameter of 18 inches (45 cm). Want a mounding type of flower to form big globes of color in your flowerbeds and borders? Verbena can do that too. Looking for a flower in red, pink, peach, blue, purple or white? Do you need vibrant colors or do you des­ire soft pastels? Doesn't matter -- Verbena has all of those in its many forms.

Again as with our previous flowers, in the South it can grow as a perennial, but Midwesterners will have to settle for this versatile flower as an annual. Though you have to be sure to start planting after all danger of frost has passed, once they germinate, Verbena don't require a lot of care. And while they can be slow to start (you might have to wait more than a month after planting to see some results), Verbena are easy to plant from seeds, so they can be a cheaper addition to your landscaping design. These flowers also need a lot of water when planted from seeds. Once they become well established, however, you don't need to water often, only when extremely dry.

The one main caretaker task of Verbena is deadheading. After planting, you will need to cut off the dead and dying blooms continually in order for the plant to re-flower. However, as that is the only major requirement to take care of these flowers, many growers enjoy having a variety of these colorful blooms in their gardens.