High Desert Container Gardening With Bright, Heat-Loving Annuals

I worked hard, little by little, to get a beautiful display of beautiful native plants started in my flower beds. I am finally at the point where I like them and feel a sense of pride for their beauty. The downside is the fight against sand cutters, wild grass, Russian thistle and a delicious variety of tall stubborn desert weeds.

It’s all right, but flowers are growing in containers and hanging baskets that I love most. I don’t have fancy plants or color palettes; for me, it is a riot of bright colors.

Cultivation of bright and heat-resistant container plants

Geraniums are at the center of most of my pots. They have always been red, but I’m trying the neon pink this year because the real red geraniums of the fire engine are hard to find. They usually have an orange, pink or burgundy tint which spoils the effect for me.

High Desert Container Gardening With Bright, Heat-Loving Annuals
High Desert Container Gardening With Bright, Heat-Loving Annuals

My other container plants are Wave’s petunias and calibrachoa: they are beautiful, heat tolerant and don’t require deadheading, which makes things a lot easier. I also found that I like potted zinnias: miniature varieties are perfect. Sometimes, I hide in other end plants, like bacopa or lobelia, depending on what catches my attention (and what’s on sale).

I don’t even have any design ideas on the containers, so I have a mix of vases of all sizes that I’ve collected over the years. I’ve tried cute Pinterest-like ideas like sedum or pansies growing in an old toolbox, but they always seem like a second year made for Mother’s Day.

Last year I bought too many geraniums and I was running out of potted space. I had several terracotta pots of varying sizes in my canopy, so I filled them with potting soil and stuffed a geranium into each pot. I put the pots on each side of the door and had fun all summer. It really seemed like you had a plan in mind!

With the heat again, a new container gardening season is underway. I can safely plant my annual heat lovers. Empty pots are sitting on my deck and the little geraniums are under growing lights. Summer, here we come!

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