While you may know the hibiscus as a warm-weather lover, dying at the first sign of frost, there is a hardy version which will withstand growing in colder parts of the world.
There is a trade-off, however. While they won’t die in the cold, their growth rate will slow down, and you may notice fewer flowers, too.
The hibiscus flower has been used for centuries to make beautiful and fragrant bouquets. The flowers are also used to decorate homes during holidays or special occasions.
Hibiscus flowers come in many different colors (see also Hibiscus Varieties To Try) including white, pink, red, orange, yellow, purple, blue, green, and even black.
The way to tell the difference between a hardy hibiscus and a tropical hibiscus is in the leaves.
Foliage with a high sheen only occurs on the tropical varieties, and heart-shaped, matte leaves form part of the hardy hibiscus.
Heather comes from the Ericaceae plant family. It comes from the Old English word heofon meaning “heath”.
The plant hails from many parts of the Northern Hemisphere, as well as South Africa.
While the flowers on a heather are very small, they make up for this in number, sometimes completely eclipsing the foliage.
In the wild, they can be seen from a great distance, covering huge expanses of moors, fells, and hills with perfect hues of purple, white, and pink.
Also known as sacred bamboo, or Nandina domestica, this beautiful plant produces lovely spherical blooms in spring.
Hailing from Japan and China, this shrub makes an interesting focal point with its foliage, bearing bright green leaves which mature into a deep red.
It’s easy to grow, but it does require some maintenance.
Depending on where you live, it may be a semi-evergreen or a deciduous plant, capable of reaching 6 feet tall in the right conditions.
One of the biggest plant genera in New Zealand, the hebe genus is made up of just under 100 different species, hailing from South America, the Falklands, New Zealand, and Rapa.
These plants have long been popular garden favorites due to their unique appearance and ease of care.
They’re often found in parks, gardens, and public spaces throughout the world. In temperate parts, hebes are evergreen shrubs, usually with variegated leaves.
The flowers appear from summer into fall, frequently in pinks, whites, purples, or blues.
Despite their appearance, hebes are tough little plants which do well in exposed areas, even in salty soil which other plants won’t survive in.
Also known as Sneezeweed, Helenium is one of the most common perennials in North American gardens.
It’s not hard to see why, as they are hardy, easy to grow, and provide buckets of color into any garden.
This perennial grows best in full sun, preferring dry soils and sandy loam.
Its stems reach anywhere from 2 to 4 feet tall, depending on the variety.
Its large, daisy-like flowers bloom from mid-summer onward, well into fall if the weather stays warm enough.
Part of the Heliotropiaceae plant family, these gorgeous blooms will inject a lot of color into any garden, with tiny clusters of flowers.
They’re also quite easy to grow, making them ideal for beginners.
Their name translates from Greek as “to turn towards the sun”, which refers to the belief that the flowers would follow the sun, much like sunflowers and daisies do.
The flowers themselves are typically light pink, purple, or white, and have been a firm favorite of cottage garden planting schemes for years.
To get the most out of these plants, situate them somewhere near seating areas, paths, or windows, where you can enjoy their fragrance.
Hellebores (see also How To Grow Hellebores) belong to the Helleborus genus, within the Helleboraceae plant family, as you might guess!
They prefer moist, fertile soil and shade during the spring and summer months, and bright sunlight during the winter.
This makes them perfect for planting underneath large shrubs and deciduous leaves, providing a wealth of color year after year.
These plants also bloom prolifically, though you might miss these flowers, as they bow, pointing toward the floor, and can easily be mistaken for a leaf.
The flowers come in a huge range of colors, thanks to their trait of being easy to hybridize.
A member of the Solanaceae plant family, henbane is native to Europe and Siberia, growing in fields, meadows, and along roadsides.
It’s worth knowing this plant, just to avoid it, if nothing else. While it is a pretty ornamental plant, it’s hugely poisonous, being part of the nightshade plant family.
In the past, it was used for sedation and as a pain reliever, and as an ingredient in beer.
A member of the Ranunculus plant family, Hepaticas are popular garden favorites due to their showy flowers, which come in a wide array of colors.
They are often mistaken for anemones, with their colorful blooms, attracting plenty of pollinators into your garden.
The way you can tell the difference is in the petals. Hepatica flowers have petals which differ slightly in size.
They’re also easy to grow, requiring moist soil, dappled or full sunlight.
Also known as Hollyhocks, this flower has become synonymous with English gardens over the centuries, though they are grown all over the world.
With its beautiful, trumpet-shaped flowers, hollyhocks make great cut flowers, but they also thrive when planted en masse.
They come from the same plant family as cotton, okra, and hibiscus, belonging to the Malvaceae plant genus.
If you’re wanting to add a lot of height and drama into your garden fairly quickly, hollyhocks are among the best plants to pick.
They also come in a range of colors, in shades of pink, purple, red, white, burgundy, and yellow.
Honesty is another one of those flowers that people tend to overlook, despite its beauty.
Its common name comes from the instantly-recognizable seed pods, which look like silvery coins, and are translucent, which is probably more recognizable than the rest of the plant.
Also known as Lunaria, honesty bears white, purple or pink flowers, and features heart-shaped foliage.
Typically, honesty is grown as an annual flower, but you can also grow it as a biennial, too.
Native to North America and parts of Eurasia, honeysuckles are members of the Caprifoliaceae plant family, and are quite easy to grow.
You’ll need well-drained soil, and lots of sun, so they don’t get root rot.
You can use them to cover trellises and fences, sides of houses, or as a great shrub in their own right, depending on the type of honeysuckle you go for.
Their flowers are usually bright yellow, orange, or red, but there are some varieties that come in other colors.
You can get both evergreen and deciduous types too, so there’s a variety for every garden imaginable.
Hooker’s Orchid Flower
While maybe not one of the first flowers you think of, it certainly deserves a mention.
The Hooker’s Orchid Cactus, or Epiphyllum hookeri produces fantastic flowers, though the plant is often grown just for its climbing form as a fuss-free cactus.
The flowers only open during the night, typically lasting for a single night.
It may get as tall as eight feet outside, while indoors this is likely to be one or two feet.
As cold temperatures will kill a hooker’s orchid cactus, it’s frequently grown as a houseplant.
This is one of the most popular plants out there, and for good reason.
There are literally thousands of different types of hostas available, (see also Hosta Care Guide) ranging from small, compact ones to large, sprawling specimens.
Each type has its own unique characteristics, and some can even be grown as houseplants.
While hostas are primarily grown for their large foliage, these wonderful plants also flower.
The flowers are produced on one to several flower spikes, each producing a cluster of flowers.
It’s worth noting that hostas like shady, damp areas. Unfortunately, they are also prone to attacks from slugs, snails, and caterpillars.
Spraying them with a solution of diluted garlic water every week will help keep your hosta leaves pest-free.
Agastache, giant hyssops, or the hummingbird mint is perfect for adding color to any garden.
These beauties have tiny, tubular-shaped flowers that bloom in huge, pillar-like clusters throughout summer.
Flowers can be blue, white, pink, or purple.
This plant is certain to attract many pollinators into your garden. As a member of the mint plant family, it’s worth planting the hummingbird mint in a container, otherwise it can spread a little too vigorously across your garden.
A perennial bulb, hyacinths produce beautiful blooms mainly in spring, also producing a lot of fragrance at the same time.
New hybrids are being developed all the time, which means that hyacinths are becoming increasingly available in more colors, such as deep purple, bright red, magenta, and sunny yellow, not just the deep blue and white flowers you may know.
They’re especially pretty when planted in groups, which is why they’re often used as floral centerpieces at weddings and parties.
If you want to grow hyacinths yourself, make sure you give them plenty of space to grow, dividing them every few years.
One of the easiest plants to care for, hydrangeas (see also Growing Hydrangeas) are easy to grow and require very little maintenance.
They’re an excellent choice if you don’t have much experience gardening. They’re also great for beginners because they’re relatively inexpensive.
You can get dwarf varieties which are perfect for containers or smaller gardens, or you can get huge, sprawling shrub hydrangeas which will hold their own in any planting scheme.
Hydrangeas come in a wide variety of colors, including white, cream, lavender, rose, light pink, salmon, burgundy, orange, and coral.
Also known as St. John’s Wort, this herbaceous perennial produces showy flowers in shades of yellow.
Its common name refers to when it flowers. It blooms near St’ John’s Day, which is 24th June.