Before the heat becomes more of a challenge and watering becomes a real chore, I recommend planting as soon as possible. The Daytona Heat collection of Vitex sp., with names of NASCAR race car drivers, will deal with scorching summers and bloom at about 4- to 6-feet tall. Try Danica Pink and Petty Blue for Father’s Day fun in your garden. New butterfly bush (Buddleja) varieties come in smaller sizes, like the Lo & Behold Blue Chip and Pugster series, that have lovely scents from the flower spikes of rich purples and blues on compact 2- to 3-feet tall plants.

How about a mounding glossy abelia (Abelia species)? There are diminutive options out there with variations in their foliage and with clusters of fragrant white flowers. For example, Kaleidoscope offers rich foliage colors, while Confetti produces pink variegated foliage and Twist of Lime features green and yellow new growth.

Callicarpa americana

American beautyberry (Callicarpa americana) is an arching shrub native to our region. This shrub typically grows up to 8-feet tall and features tiny blooms but incredible, showy vibrant purple fruit that clusters along the stems.

Remember, some Texas natives prefer a shady spot, but will hold up to all weather extremes. All of these plants attract pollinators to your landscape. Enjoy your summer garden under a fan on the porch while watching some winged friends visit your new shrubs!


Suzzanne Chapman
Author: Suzzanne ChapmanEmail: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.
Suzzanne Chapman, retired botanical collections curator at Mercer Botanic Gardens, promotes organic gardening, growing native plants, and protecting the environment. Send your questions to This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it..

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