Warning: This post is full of hot, bright colors!
Why am I posting about Lantanas in October? Because I'm amazed they bloomed nonstop in my garden for six months straight! As I mentioned in my last post, Lantana camara already has a spot in my garden plans for 2014.
All the photos in this post were captured either in my Wisconsin garden or in New Orleans. I didn't separate them because it doesn't really matter--same plant, same beautiful shape and colors! There are many cultivars of Lantana, and many of the photos here are of 'Sunrise Rose Improved.'
Lantana is a tropical plant, winter-hardy to USDA zones 9-11, and native to Central and South America, according to the Missouri Botanical Garden. Sometimes called Shrub Verbena, Spanish Flag, or Bacon and Eggs, it's invasive in parts of the southern U.S. In New Orleans, I saw it growing all over the place.
Throughout most of the U.S., however, it's an easy-care, bright annual that (I now know) blooms from first planting of bedding plants to the first frost. It prefers full sun, the leaves are somewhat fragrant, and it attracts butterflies and other pollinators. Under optimal conditions, it grows 3 ft. to 4 ft. tall and 1 ft. to 3 ft. wide. It's also drought-tolerant and grows in medium to sandy soil.
Plus, it looks great planted near Salvia.
I'll be dreaming of Lantanas during the long, cold months ahead...
(Note: I'm taking a short break during the next few days. I might visit blogs here and there, but I'll be back and active in about a week. Thanks for your camaraderie, fellow gardeners and bloggers!)