Dahlias are native to Central America and Mexico and love the heat. Nuit D'Ete Cactus Dahlia shown here. Dahlias are native to Central America and Mexico and love the heat. Nuit D'Ete Cactus Dahlia shown here.
Dahlias are native to Central America and Mexico and love the heat. Nuit D'Ete Cactus Dahlia shown here.

Summer Blooming Bulbs For Beautiful Flowers The First Summer

Summer blooming bulbs are a great way to color up your garden. Most bloom their first growing season, many can be used as annuals (in colder climates) and as perennials in mild-winter climates and many are heat lovers, excellent for use in regions with hot, humid summers. In general, these are a versatile group of bulbs where many years of breeding improvements (done primarily in Europe) have created a kaleidoscope of colors and flower forms.

Learn more about our Most Popular Spring-Planted, Summer Blooming Bulbs:

Dahlia

Originally native to Mexico and Central America, these showy flowers love the heat. Dahlias make outstanding cut flowers and I recommend finding a spot in your garden where you can cultivate a number of different varieties for an unending supply of late summer cuts. Dahlia Dark Angel® Dracula is a compact single-flowered variety that is excellent for container gardens and will bloom all summer with its nectar-rich purple-red flowers. Engage and amaze with Dinnerplate varieties; their huge flowers can be 8 inches across! Many gardeners are unaware that Dahlias can be successfully overwintered in mild winter areas in zones 8 to 10. In cooler zones, they can be dug up and overwintered indoors. Shop All Dahlias

  1. Totally Tangerine Dahlia, Dahlia Totally Tangerine

    Bright, saucy, and cheerful in shades of pinks and orange, ‚Totally Tangerine‚ Dahlias are an essential addition to the summer garden. They bloom profusely with anemone-t...

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    Totally Tangerine Dahlia Totally Tangerine Dahlia Dahlia Totally Tangerine
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    $18.99 Sale $15.19
    Per Bag of 3
    Bright, saucy, and cheerful in shades of pinks and orange, 'Totally Tangerine' Dahlias are an essential addition to the summer garden. They bloom profusely with anemone-type flowers, featuring orange petals with rose pink backsides that surround a dark orange pincushion center. The open flowers are a delight for pollinators and cut flower arrangements, blooming from summer through to frost.
  2. Arabian Night Dahlia, Dahlia Arabian Night

    ‚Arabian Night‚ Dahlia complements the summer garden with layers of slightly curved, burgundy-red petals that look almost black in the center. A decorative Dahlia with fl...

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    Arabian Night Dahlia Arabian Night Dahlia Dahlia Arabian Night
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    $18.99 Sale $15.19
    Per Bag of 3
    'Arabian Night' Dahlia complements the summer garden with layers of slightly curved, burgundy-red petals that look almost black in the center. A decorative Dahlia with flowers up to 4 inches across, it’s ready-made for bouquets. A prolific bloomer from summer until frost, 'Arabian Night' makes a memorable impression, adding depth, contrast, and velvety texture to the garden.
  3. Otto's Thrill Dinnerplate Dahlia, Dinnerplate Dahlia Otto's Thrill

    Every garden needs at least one showstopper, and ‚Otto’s Thrill‚ Dinnerplate Dahlia is a top pick for prolific blooms. Blooming with luminous pink 8-to10-inch flowe...

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    Otto's Thrill Dinnerplate Dahlia Otto's Thrill Dinnerplate Dahlia Dinnerplate Dahlia Otto's Thrill
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    $19.99 Sale $15.99
    Per Bag of 3
    Every garden needs at least one showstopper, and 'Otto’s Thrill' Dinnerplate Dahlia is a top pick for prolific blooms. Blooming with luminous pink 8-to10-inch flowers, 'Otto’s Thrill' will keep blooming from summer through frost. A multiple award winner, this must-have Dahlia will enhance any full sun garden.
  4. Café au Lait Dinnerplate Dahlia Flower

    Café Au Lait Dinnerplate Dahlia is so breathtakingly beautiful that it’s a favorite for special occasions everywhere. Big 6-10„ sumptuous flowers are creamy white blushe...

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    Cafe au Lait Dinnerplate Dahlia Café au Lait Dinnerplate Dahlia Dinnerplate Dahlia Cafe au Lait
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    $22.99 Sale $18.39
    Per Bag of 3
    Café Au Lait Dinnerplate Dahlia is so breathtakingly beautiful that it’s a favorite for special occasions everywhere. Big 6-10" sumptuous flowers are creamy white blushed with shades of pink, peach, and mocha. No two flowers are the same. Cut some of these beautiful blooms, and you’ll have a stunning bouquet.

Lilies

These long-lived bulbs can be grown across much of the country, but are at their best in cooler climates. Like peonies, the colder the winters the longer they live. Many of them are quite fragrant, too! We recommend that taller Lilies be planted among other shorter perennials, or plant with lush foliage, to fill in around the base of their tall, thin stems. A beautiful way to add pops of color in the garden. Shop All Lilies 

  1. Big News Oriental Lily, Lilium Big News

    With towering stems and bright white trumpet-shaped flowers, ‚Big News‚ Oriental Lily (Lilium orientalis) adds an elegant presence to the summer garden. With huge flowers...

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    Big News® Oriental Lily Big News® Oriental Lily Lilium Big News®
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    $13.99 Sale $11.19
    Per Bag of 3
    With towering stems and bright white trumpet-shaped flowers, 'Big News' Oriental Lily (Lilium orientalis) adds an elegant presence to the summer garden. With huge flowers up to 12 inches across and a sweet, rich fragrance, it’s impossible to miss. Hummingbirds, bees, and butterflies love the blooms, and they make lovely cut flowers too. It’s easy to grow and deer resistant. Blooming in mid-to-late summer, they will add a sweet surprise to a sunny setting.
  2. Evening Sunset Lily Bulb Collection

    Our Evening Sunset Lily Collection brings radiant color to gardens all summer long. Star-shaped blooms in deep burgundy red, glowing orange, dusky plum, and sunset pink. These easy-t...

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    Evening Sunset Lily Bulb Collection Evening Sunset Lily Bulb Collection
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    $38.99 Sale $31.19
    Per Collection of 12
    Our Evening Sunset Lily Collection brings radiant color to gardens all summer long. Star-shaped blooms in deep burgundy red, glowing orange, dusky plum, and sunset pink. These easy-to-grow lilies boast upward-facing blooms that make magnificent cut flowers and attract butterflies and other pollinators to the garden. Richly fragrant blooms perform beautifully in the garden or containers. Collection of 12 bulbs.
  3. Asiatic Lily 'Forever Susan'

    ‘Forever Susan’ Asiatic Lily has vivid, deep burgundy flowers highlighted with bright gold and orange. Enriching the summer garden with a profusion of blooms, ‘Fore...

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    Forever Susan Asiatic Lily Forever Susan Asiatic Lily Lilium Forever Susan
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    $11.99 Sale $9.59
    Per Bag of 3
    ‘Forever Susan’ Asiatic Lily has vivid, deep burgundy flowers highlighted with bright gold and orange. Enriching the summer garden with a profusion of blooms, ‘Forever Susan’ will bridge the season between spring-blooming bulbs and summer’s blossoms. Lilies are excellent cut flowers and will attract pollinators to your garden.
  4. Allergy Friendly Flower Bulb Collection

    Breathe deep and smile with our colorful Allergy Friendly Bulb Collection of pollen-free flowering perennials. Our set of bulbs includes mix of Harlequin Flower Mix (Sparaxis), Karma...

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    Allergy Friendly Flower Bulb Collection Allergy Friendly Flower Bulb Collection
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    $43.99 Sale $35.19
    Per Collection of 53
    Breathe deep and smile with our colorful Allergy Friendly Bulb Collection of pollen-free flowering perennials. Our set of bulbs includes mix of Harlequin Flower Mix (Sparaxis), Karma Corona Semi-Cactus Dahlia and Peacock Orchid to show off summer’s hues in a rainbow of colors sure to bring a smile. Perfect for creating pollen-free bouquets. Total of 53 bulbs.

Gladiolus

These South African wildflowers have been breed for generations to increase their flower size and color range. While most Gladiolus are perennial in zones 8 to 10, the dwarf hardy Glads are suitable for zones 5, 6, and 7 making a gorgeous display mixed into perennial beds. The taller, less cold-hardy varieties make superb, long-lasting cut flowers. Plant some future bouquets this spring with a nice mix of tall, large-flowered varieties. Shop All Gladiolus

  1. Espresso Gladiolus, Gladiolus Espresso

    ‚Espresso‚ Gladiolus offers some of the darkest flowers available, with sultry deep crimson flowers surrounding pure white stamens. They’ll give a pop of color to a...

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    Espresso Gladiolus Espresso Gladiolus Gladiolus Espresso
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    $16.99 Sale $13.59
    Per Bag of 15
    'Espresso' Gladiolus offers some of the darkest flowers available, with sultry deep crimson flowers surrounding pure white stamens. They’ll give a pop of color to a perennial bed awash in lavenders and pinks, or its deep red flowers will shine in front of an evergreen background. Easy-to-grow and sun-loving, hummingbird favorite and deer-resistant Gladiolus make lovely cut flowers too. Plant extra for the vase!
  2. Piet Mohlen Gladiolus, Gladiolus Piet Mohlen

    ‚Piet Mohlen‚ Gladiolus offers softly ruffled white flowers on towering stems. A must-have for a monochromatic garden, cutting garden, or a special sunny spot where they ...

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    Piet Mohlen Gladiolus Piet Mohlen Gladiolus Gladiolus Piet Mohlen
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    $16.99 Sale $13.59
    Per Bag of 15
    'Piet Mohlen' Gladiolus offers softly ruffled white flowers on towering stems. A must-have for a monochromatic garden, cutting garden, or a special sunny spot where they can show off their height and exquisite blooms. Hummingbird favorites and deer-resistant, they are easy-keepers.
  3. Kemerova Gladiolus, Gladiolus Kemerova

    Expressing the essence of summer, ‚Kemerova‚ Gladiolus sports luscious ruffled lemon-yellow flowers along 4-foot-tall stems. A striking vertical flower show that will enh...

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    Kemerova Gladiolus Kemerova Gladiolus Gladiolus Kemerova
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    $18.99 Sale $15.19
    Per Bag of 15
    Expressing the essence of summer, 'Kemerova' Gladiolus sports luscious ruffled lemon-yellow flowers along 4-foot-tall stems. A striking vertical flower show that will enhance your summer garden, 'Kemerova' adds light and harmonizes with other summer flowers. They make great cut flowers, so plant extra for the vase. Easy-care and deer-resistant, the hummingbirds will enjoy the flowers too.
  4. Hardy Gladiolus Nanus Mix, Gladiolus nanus, Hardy Gladiolus

    These smaller growing Gladiolus are cold hardy to zone 5 (when well mulched for winter). The mixture of pink, white and bi-colored flowers are wonderful at the front of your perennia...

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    Hardy Gladiolus Mix Hardy Gladiolus Mix Gladiolus nanus Mix
    As low as $19.99 Sale $15.99
    Per Bag of 25
    These smaller growing Gladiolus are cold hardy to zone 5 (when well mulched for winter). The mixture of pink, white and bi-colored flowers are wonderful at the front of your perennial border.

Canna Lilies

The hotter the better for these sub-tropical beauties, which are native to the southeastern US and Central America. In areas of the country where mid-summer heat and humidity is too much for many flowers, Cannas will thrive. Fast-growing, with vibrant blooms and lush, tropical-looking foliage, by planting Canna Lily bulbs, you’ll quickly get a handsome addition to your garden. Canna Lilies will deliver a summer-long show, with huge, spectacular iris-like flowers. Plant them where you want to draw They can be grown in regular flower beds or large containers with enriched soil and regular irrigation. Or they are excellent bog plants for those of you with ponds and areas with damp, boggy soil. Water often, as Canna Lilies enjoy moist ground, though constant wetness isn’t necessary. Plant them where you want to draw attention, or use their large size to your advantage and create a dramatic Canna Lily screen. Shop All Cannas

  1. Red Dazzler Canna Lily

    Red Dazzler Canna Lily is tall and stately, with vibrant red blooms and lime green foliage. Cannas are easy to grow for a tropical touch in sunny gardens, courtyards, and containers....

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    Red Dazzler Canna Lily Red Dazzler Canna Lily Canna x generalis 'Red Dazzler'
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    $16.99 Sale $13.59
    Per Bag of 3
    Red Dazzler Canna Lily is tall and stately, with vibrant red blooms and lime green foliage. Cannas are easy to grow for a tropical touch in sunny gardens, courtyards, and containers. At 5 to 6 feet tall, grow ‘Red Dazzler’ as a backdrop to shorter or bronze-leaved Cannas and other brightly-flowered plants for a summer show that attracts butterflies and hummingbirds.
  2. Cannasol™ Happy Carmen® Canna Lily

    Cannasol™ Happy Carmen® Canna Lily has eye-popping hot red, long-lasting, big flowers on a compact plant with lush green foliage. Flowering from May to September, they are easy-ca...

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    CannaSol™ Happy Carmen® Canna Lily CannaSol™ Happy Carmen® Canna Lily Canna indica Happy Carmen®
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    $19.99 Sale $15.99
    Per Bag of 2
    Cannasol™ Happy Carmen® Canna Lily has eye-popping hot red, long-lasting, big flowers on a compact plant with lush green foliage. Flowering from May to September, they are easy-care solutions for big summer color. What’s not to love?
  3. Cannasol™ Happy Cleo® Canna Lily

    Cannasol™ Happy Cleo® Canna Lily, with its colorful orange flowers will keep you in tropical color from May to September. Golden throats open to speckled orange petals and the flo...

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    CannaSol™ Happy Cleo® Canna Lily CannaSol™ Happy Cleo® Canna Lily Canna indica Happy Cleo®
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    $19.99 Sale $15.99
    Per Bag of 2
    Cannasol™ Happy Cleo® Canna Lily, with its colorful orange flowers will keep you in tropical color from May to September. Golden throats open to speckled orange petals and the flowers just keep on coming. Pollinator favorite and it repels deer too.
  4. Cannasol™ Happy Emily® Canna Lily

    Cannasol™ Happy Emily® Canna Lily has exotic golden yellow flowers speckled with bright orange are a mesmerizing focal point in the summer garden. Plant Happy Emily in groups alon...

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    CannaSol™ Happy Emily® Canna Lily CannaSol™ Happy Emily® Canna Lily Canna indica Happy Emily®
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    $19.99 Sale $15.99
    Per Bag of 2
    Cannasol™ Happy Emily® Canna Lily has exotic golden yellow flowers speckled with bright orange are a mesmerizing focal point in the summer garden. Plant Happy Emily in groups along a border or anywhere you want to draw the eye. It’s a show stealer!

Calla Lilies

Not to be confused with Cannas, these South African native plants are unusual and exotically colored. I like to use Calla Lilies in container gardens where their unique flowers contrast vividly with petunias and other common annuals. In the garden, these are vigorous perennials for mild-winter areas (zones 8 to 10) of the southern states where the rainfall is more regular. Best grown in pots in the drier intermountain West and colder climates, but in coastal areas of California, they are a great "no-brainer" perennial. Shop All Calla Lilies

  1. Ivory Art Calla Lily, Zantedeschia Ivory Art

    A sought-after flower for bouquets, Ivory Art® Calla Lily (Zantedeschia) brings sheer elegance to any setting. Pure white chalice-shaped blossoms add a spectacular effect wherever t...

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    Ivory Art® Calla Lily Ivory Art® Calla Lily Zantedeschia Ivory Art®
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    $11.99 Sale $9.59
    Per Bag of 1
    A sought-after flower for bouquets, Ivory Art® Calla Lily (Zantedeschia) brings sheer elegance to any setting. Pure white chalice-shaped blossoms add a spectacular effect wherever they are planted. Easy-to-grow, deer-resistant, and pollinator-friendly, they make long-lasting cut flowers too. Plant them in a location where you can enjoy the sculptural summer blooms. Lovely in containers too.
  2. Escape Calla Lily, Zantedeschia Escape

    Lift your perennial bed to a new dimension with ‚Escape‚ Calla Lily (Zantedeschia). The dark, dramatic blossoms almost defy the senses! Deep purple to black blooms make t...

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    Escape Calla Lily Escape Calla Lily Zantedeschia Escape
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    $11.99 Sale $9.59
    Per Bag of 1
    Lift your perennial bed to a new dimension with 'Escape' Calla Lily (Zantedeschia). The dark, dramatic blossoms almost defy the senses! Deep purple to black blooms make these stunning plants a striking addition to the summer garden. Plant as a bold focal point or add contrast to your garden border, where they are sure to turn heads. Easy to grow, deer-resistant, and pollinator-friendly, they make long-lasting cut flowers, too. Deer and rabbits avoid them, while butterflies and hummingbirds enjoy their nectar.
  3. Captain Brunello Calla Lily ,Zantedeschia sprengeri Captain Brunello

    ‚Captain Brunello‚ Calla Lily (Zantedeschia) lights up the summer flower stage with fluted apricot-peach blossoms and lightly speckled foliage. Plant them along a path, i...

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    Captain Brunello® Calla Lily Captain Brunello® Calla Lily Zantedeschia sprengeri Captain Brunello®
    Sale Price I Save 20%
    $11.99 Sale $9.59
    Per Bag of 1
    'Captain Brunello' Calla Lily (Zantedeschia) lights up the summer flower stage with fluted apricot-peach blossoms and lightly speckled foliage. Plant them along a path, in a container, or mixed into a perennial bed. Happy in a full-to-part sun location, they make excellent cut flowers and supply enough blossoms for home and garden. Deer and rabbits avoid them, while butterflies and hummingbirds enjoy their nectar.
  4. Lady Marmalade Calla Lily, Zantedeschia Lady Marmalade

    A perfect garden pick-me-up, ‚Lady Marmalade‚ Calla Lily (Zantedeschia) brings sweet peach color to the summer landscape. Brilliant planted en masse, elegant as a contain...

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    Lady Marmalade Calla Lily Lady Marmalade Calla Lily Zantedeschia Lady Marmalade
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    $11.99 Sale $9.59
    Per Bag of 1
    A perfect garden pick-me-up, 'Lady Marmalade' Calla Lily (Zantedeschia) brings sweet peach color to the summer landscape. Brilliant planted en masse, elegant as a container garden feature, or fun sprinkled throughout the perennial bed where they will enhance the garden with their unique shape and color. Easy to grow, these striking plants are happy in full to part sun. Deer and rabbits avoid them, while butterflies and hummingbirds enjoy their nectar.

Unique Summer Blooming Bulbs

If you want something you won't find in everyone else's garden, choose wonderful spring-planted bulbs from our 'Unique Bulbs' selection. Easily grown, these flower bulbs will add interest to your garden beds with their unique blooms and rich, vibrant colors. Try Crocosmia, Freesia, Foxtail Lilies, Tiger Floweres, Anemone and more! Shop All Unique Bulbs

Triteleia (Starflowers)

This genus of native bulbs comes to us from the Pacific Northwest. Not well known, these early summer bloomers are easy, long-lived and color-up the garden with their starry flowers in white and shades of blue. Starflowers are a good addition to the xeric (waterwise) garden as they grow well in drier conditions and poorer soils. I've even seen them mixed into beds of cacti!

Stretch your horticultural wings this year and plant some unique summer blooming bulbs. Mixed into container gardens, planted to fill in newly planted perennial beds, or as part of your cut flower garden, these flowers are a great way to enjoy quick-to-bloom summer color.

Starflowers grow well in dry conditions and poorer soils.Starflowers grow well in dry conditions and poorer soils.
Starflowers grow well in dry conditions and poorer soils.
  1. Blue Freesia, Babiana stricta 'Mixture'

    Babiana stricta, also called Blue Freesia or Baboon Flower, features small, sweetly fragrant trumpet-shaped flowers in harmonious shades of magenta, lilac, and white. This easy-care ...

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    Blue Freesia (Babiana stricta) Blue Freesia or Baboon Flower Babiana stricta
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    $12.99 Sale $10.39
    Per Bag of 25
    Babiana stricta, also called Blue Freesia or Baboon Flower, features small, sweetly fragrant trumpet-shaped flowers in harmonious shades of magenta, lilac, and white. This easy-care bulb will brighten up the late spring to early summer garden. With a gentle lemon scent and many long-blooming flowers per stem, this sturdy flower is an easy-care choice for a sunny border, rock garden, or container planting. Plant en masse for best impact.
  2. Double Tuberose, Polianthes The Pearl

    Double Tuberose (Polianthes) is a double-flowered cultivar, also known as The Pearl, and has fragrant, creamy-white flowers on tall stems above clumps of grass-like foliage. Double T...

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    The Pearl Double Tuberose (Polianthes) The Pearl Double Tuberose Polianthes tuberosa The Pearl
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    $13.99 Sale $11.19
    Per Bag of 3
    Double Tuberose (Polianthes) is a double-flowered cultivar, also known as The Pearl, and has fragrant, creamy-white flowers on tall stems above clumps of grass-like foliage. Double Tuberose is a wonderful cut flower for long-lasting flower arrangements. Perfect for patio pots. 24-36" tall.
  3. Gloriosa Lily, Gloriosa rothschildiana

    Like a flash of firelight, Gloriosa Lily (Gloriosa rothschildiana or commonly, Flame Lily or Fire Lily) is an eye-catching climbing tender perennial that bears unusual rich-toned red...

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    Gloriosa Lily Gloriosa Lily, Fire Lily Gloriosa rothschildiana
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    $24.99 Sale $19.99
    Per Bag of 3
    Like a flash of firelight, Gloriosa Lily (Gloriosa rothschildiana or commonly, Flame Lily or Fire Lily) is an eye-catching climbing tender perennial that bears unusual rich-toned red flowers, with penciled yellow edges and swept back petals. Spice up a boring wall or trellis with Gloriosa! (Note: All parts of the plant are poisonous.)
  4. Pink Zephyranthes Pink, Zephyranthus, Rain Lilies or Fairy Lilies

    Zephyranthes Pink Rain Lilies (sometimes known as Fairy Lilies) are some of our finest native bulbs ranging from Texas down into Central America. Pink Rain Lily naturalizes to form c...

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    Pink Rain Lily Pink Rain Lily Zephyranthes Pink
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    $14.99 Sale $11.99
    Per Bag of 25
    Zephyranthes Pink Rain Lilies (sometimes known as Fairy Lilies) are some of our finest native bulbs ranging from Texas down into Central America. Pink Rain Lily naturalizes to form colorful colonies that bloom after summer rains.


Text and Photos by David Salman.

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