Like HowStuffWorks on Facebook!

Top 5 Annuals for the West


1
Angelonia
Angelonia, also commonly called snapdragon, can be cut from your garden and enjoyed in a bouquet in your home.
Angelonia, also commonly called snapdragon, can be cut from your garden and enjoyed in a bouquet in your home.
Medioimages/Photodisc/Getty Images

­Orchid-like yet hardier, this snapdragon-like plant is a favorite of many. With stalks that can reach 2 feet (61 cm) in height or more (with lots of heat) and more than 30 species on today's market, this plant is a natural mix for your hot-weather garden. Although growth habits will vary by species, you should make sure your angelonia has lots of sunlight and lots of space -- up to 16 inches (41 cm) from other plants is just about right. This plant will do well as a clipping starter by trimming a bit and replanting. With­ proper care, you should be able to get Angelonia all year long. Angelonia likes warm weather, and expecting it to do well in a greenhouse can sometimes lead to trouble [source: Schoellhorn].

Some of the varieties include:

  • Angelface Blue or Pink Angelonia -- vibrant pinks or deep, deep blue blossoms
  • Serena Purple Angelonia -- regal purples on long stalks
  • Angelonia Lavender or Pink -- pale purple or pink characterize this newer beauty

Now that you have a handle on annuals for the­ Western way, plan your diagram and dig in! One of the best ways to plan for a hot-weather garden is to know your terrain and plan for it. Knowing that some plants like shade or soft soil can help you decide where to plant, and what to put there. Using our guide to the Top 5 Annuals for the West will help you in that, but one of the best ways to see what grows (and how well it fairs) in your area, is to check out the yards and professionally-done landscapes around you.