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Southern Plains Regional Reports

Late Summer Color for Beastly Heat

These tough plants won’t wilt or fade in the heat and humidity

Common yarrow

I have a special love in my heart for those plants that flower in the beastly heat of late summer in the Southern Plains. When you and your garden are both starting to wither in the summer heat, here are a few species you can count on to perk you up with late-summer blooms.

desert willow
Desert willow. Photo: Karen Beaty.

Desert willow (Chilopsis linearis, Zones 5–9)

The first plant that comes to mind when I think of beautiful late summer bloomers is desert willow. Desert willow is not a true willow but a member of Bignoniaceae, which includes trumpet creeper (Campsis radicans, Zones 4–9), yellow bells (Tecoma stans, Zones 10–11), and the catalpas (Catalpa spp. and cvs., Zones 4–8). Desert willow grows into a small tree with an open, airy crown and slender, willowlike leaves. It blooms all summer long, especially after rain, and its showy blossoms are white, pink, purple, or…

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