By Vicki Duong
April showers are supposed to bring May flowers, but even Mother Nature needs a helping hand every once in a while. Flowers not only give you a chance to develop a green thumb and an enjoyable hobby, they also brighten up your home’s surroundings and add to its curb appeal if selling is on the horizon.
Here are a few types of flower varieties known for their radiant qualities:
Bird of Paradise: These beauties are native to South Africa and bloom from September through May. Each flower has three orange sepals and three vivid blue petals and resembles a brightly colored bird in flight.
Gladiolus: Striking and colorful with towering stems, this August birth flower and 40th wedding anniversary flower can be planted from early spring to early summer and also make great cut flowers.
Larkspur: This is among the showiest of all cultivated flower types, with colors including purple, blue, red, yellow and white. They need full sun and should be protected from high winds because the flower spikes can reach heights of up to 6 feet.
Marigold: This hardy, annual plant comes in many different colors, with yellow and orange being the most common. Most have a strong, pungent odor and have good value as far as aesthetics are concerned.
Mum: Because of their stunning bloom cover, garden mums are great for mass plantings. Look around your yard to see what colors would best complement your landscape. Options include orange, bronze, yellow, creamy white, pink, lavender and red.
Pansy: This flower is available in a number of colors, with purple and yellow being most common. Some pansies are solid in color, whereas others have dark markings resembling a “face” in the center. The seed should be sown in moistened growing material.
Periwinkle: This easy-to-grow flower is hardy and can adapt to most climate regions and conditions. In recent years, breeding has led to new varieties with purplish flowers, blue flowers and white flowers with a pink center.
Snapdragon: This long and colorful flower enjoys the sun but can wilt in extreme heat, making it a good bet for spring and fall. Colors include white, yellow, burgundy, red, pink, orange and bronze.
Rose: Landscape roses, or shrub roses, are popular for flower beds because of their thick growth, relatively low maintenance and colorful and fragrant blooms. Color options include red, purple, orange, yellow, white and pink.
What’s your favorite curb appeal flower?