Must-have Annuals

Posted by Megan Nichols on Apr 12th 2019

Old Favorites and New

So it’s the eleventieth day of January… Nah, never mind the snow, it’s almost time for the big show! The hanging baskets have gone sky-high (don’t forget to look up next time you’re in), the Vinca and Ivy are cascading over the sides of their pots, and everything is in bloom. It’s color, color everywhere with more arriving daily and we couldn’t be more excited! Check out our top annual must-haves for 2019 – some old favorites, tried and true, some recent introductions, exciting and new.

Colocasia Hawaiian Series

The new sun-loving Colocasia from Monrovia has our attention. Hawaiian series lives up to its name and loves growing in full sun (they do great in part sun, too) and evokes feelings of tropical paradise even here in Minnesota. Black Coral is breathtaking with its deep, inky coloring and the variegated Tropical Storm is unique and interesting.

Pilea peperomioides

Pilea Once the hottest (and oh so hard to find) houseplant on Instagram, this easy-care, cute-as-a-button plant is now available in abundance and, turns out, it’s amazing in mixed part-sun containers.

Silver Foliage Plants

Silver foliage Cool silver foliage was hot last year and it’s here to stay – yay! It’s hard to find a prettier contrast in combo planters than the soft glow of silver plants against the saturated colors of blooms and deeper hued foliage. Silver foliage plants tend to be soft to the touch, but it’s hard to beat the lush, velvety feel of Senecio Angel Wings and the impact of the large, rounded leaves. Stunning when paired with other plants, especially colorful flowers, foliage, and fun textures. Its natural good looks make it a prime candidate for a single specimen plant, too, since it’s pretty all on its own. Others silvery plants to try include Dichondra Silver Falls, Silver Star or Icicle Helichrysum, or the best-ever Dusty Miller.

Begonia Big Series

For shadier spots, try these tough as nails plants that blooms all summer long. Pair with bromeliad and Fiddle leaf fig bush for an amazing combo.

Iconia Begonias

Begonia Iconia Not to be missed. They can handle the sun, are elegant and drippy, and will still do well in the dappled light, part sun locations where begonias normally grow. Miss Montreal is a must have! We’ll stock all the other amazing flavors, too – First Kiss, Miss Malibu, Portofino Hot Orange, Portofino Sunrise, Portofino Yellow, Red.

Caleo Orange and Caleo Yellow Calendula

Calendula Skyfire Perfect additions to the herb and pollinator garden. They are great summer time performers and, unlike most herbs, you’ll actually want to let calendula go to flower. Harvest flowers for use in teas and other edible concoctions. Flowering continues in the heat of summer and the cool temps of Fall, and mid- and late-season pollinators will thank you for it!

Superbells Doublette Love Swept Calibrachoa

Kind of girly, but sweet and cool in a smaller arrangement. Pretty pink petals are edged in white and have a bit of a ruffle, making them extra cute.

Mainstreet Coleus Series

Coleus Main Street 5th Avenue ‘Nuf said. Tried and true, this is the only coleus you really need, and we’ll carry every color available to us. Varieties each have different colors and patterns. Ruby Road is the best Pink and Oxford Street is the best Red.

Fancy Leaf Geraniums

Geranium Fancy Leaf THE best in mixed pots and will last long into the fall. The gorgeous foliage takes center stage during periods of fewer blooms (such as after deadheading). Fancy leafs pair well with mums, grasses and kale, too, to extend the season. We’ll have the Exotic Series, including Brocade Cherry Night, Brocade Fire, Brocade Mrs. Pollock, Brocade Salmon Night, Brocade Vancouver Centennial, Occold Shield.


Sunpatiens Pink A New Guinea Impatien that is all the rage for long season color in sun or shade. Just make sure to water and water well. With vibrant colors, constant flowers, no need to deadhead, and part to full sun tolerance, the only hard part is choosing your favorite color. Check out Tropical Rose, the color of the bloom is only half the show - variegated foliage is stunning! Sunpatien colors we’ll carry include Compact Deep Rose, Compact Lilac, Compact Neon Pink, Compact Orange, Compact Pink Candy, Compact Purple, Compact Red, Compact White, Tropical Rose.


Pentas Butterflies love them! If that’s not enough, they are prolific bloomers, love sun and heat, and won’t melt in the hottest days of summer. Try Lucky Dark Red, Lucky Star Pink, Lucky Violet, and Lucky White.


Annual Salvia Show your pollinators some love with Salvia Midnight Candle and Velocity Blue. Firm stems stand up straight and can’t stop, won’t stop blooming. Bees and humming birds love them.

White Flowers

White is a necessity for contrast and the incredible glow white flowers emit in the still, early evening light of summer is unmatched. There are many pretty flowers to choose from, but a couple favorites are white Thunbergia for sun, White torenia for shade. The weeks will fly by now, and soon enough we’ll be planting outside. Really. It’s coming. Promise! See you at Your Greenhouse Home.