Florida Winter Annuals are a great way to add some color to your landscape. The cooler winter temperatures make it possible to plant a wide assortment of annuals that would normally perish in the heat of a Florida summer.
If you’re looking for the best Florida Winter Flowers we’re sure you’ll find some new favorites in this list of the best South and North Florida winter flowers that you can plant out in your garden or even in containers.
Florida Winter Annuals
Sweet Alyssum (Buy Seeds Online) is a low growing plant that will form a dense mat of delicate pink and purple blossoms. It can be planted in Florida in late fall once the temperature cools down, and it prefers to grow in full sun, but it can handle light shade. Sweet Alyssum is a great Florida winter flower for borders or edging since it forms a carpet of beautiful flowers that will last all winter long.
Baby’s Breath (Buy Seeds Online) is a wispy shrub that produces an abundance of small white or blue flowers. Babies breath is a very hardy shrub, and it will bloom profusely in the cooler winter months in Florida. You can expect Baby’s Breath to reach a height of 5 to 6-feet, and it will form a mound about 3 to 4-feet wide.
Calendula (Buy Seeds Online) is a popular Florida winter annual, and it really brings a winter garden to life with its bright yellow-orange flowers. Calendula grows to a height of 12 to 30 inches, and it forms large clumps that are 18 to 20-inches wide. Calendula should be planted in late fall in Florida, but it is a very hardy plant, and in some cases, it may survive the summer heat if you keep it well watered and protect it from the sun.
Calibrachoa (Buy Seeds Online) is also known as Million Bells, and it’s a low growing annual that will put on a lovely display of vibrant flowers all winter long. This plant doesn’t get much taller than 4-inches, and each plant will spread out to be about 2-feet wide. Calibrachoa needs to be planted in fertile soil to promote optimal growth, and it will need to be fertilized regularly to encourage a steady stream of blossoms all winter long.
Carnations (Buy Seeds Online) are one of the most popular flowers, and they have been grown in American gardens since the mid-1800s. They can grow to a height of 9 to 12 inches, and they are available in a wide range of colors. Carnations grow best in temperatures that range from 50 to 65 F during the day, and 40 to 50 F at night. They need to be planted in well-drained soil, and they need at least 4 to 6 hours of sunlight each day. Otherwise, they are a very easy plant to grow, and they will produce flowers until they succumb to the heat in late spring or early summer.
Delphinium (Buy Seeds Online) is a lovely Florida winter flower with white, pink, and lilac florets that form on a tall flower spike. They are native to Southern Europe and the Mediterranean region, which makes them well suited to growing in a Florida winter garden. They are hardy from zones 3 to 11 and they will bloom in late winter into the early spring until the heat of the summer starts to slow their growth down.
Dianthus (Buy Seeds Online) has a unique grass-like blue foliage, and it produces an abundance of colorful flowers all winter long. It is a creeping plant that stays relatively short, but it can spread to be 6 to 18-inches wide. Dianthus will also attract pollinators to your garden with its fragrant flowers that have a spicy overtone.
Dusty Miller (Buy Seeds Online) is a timeless classic that has a lacy texture and stunning silver foliage accented by bright yellow flowers. You can expect Dusty Miller to reach a height of 6 to 12-inches, and it will grow to be 2-feet wide. It needs full sun to thrive, but it will tolerate partial shade. It’s also a highly drought-tolerant plant, which makes it one of the best container plants for South Florida Winters.
Geraniums (Buy Seeds Online) are a very common flower grown in almost every region across the country. They are also one of the few annuals that you can start in early fall since they thrive in hot weather. Standard Geraniums will grow to be 6 to 12 inches tall and 2-feet wide. Geraniums are usually grown as annual flowers throughout most of the country, but they can perennialize in zones 10-11 if they aren’t exposed to freezing temperatures or frost.
Kalanchoe (Buy Plant Online) is a low maintenance plant that thrives in tropical climates. It will reach a maximum height of 6 to 12 inches, and certain varieties can spread to be 36-inches wide. Kalanchoe will burst into bloom in the winter months and keep flowering all the way into spring. Best of all its red, pink, yellow, white, or orange flowers form dense clusters that put on a lovely show atop the plant’s blue-green succulent leaves.
Read More: Best Indoor Plants for Florida
Ornamental Cabbage (Buy Seeds Online) is a versatile Florida winter annual that looks great along a walkway, or you can even nestle it in the foreground of a flower bed. You can plant Ornamental Cabbage once the temperature reaches 65 to 70 F in late fall or early winter. Ornamental Cabbage will also put on a bit of a show as the season progresses since it will display more vibrant colors as the temperature starts to fall.
Pansies (Buy Seeds Online) are small delicate flowers that will produce an abundance of blooms in Florida all winter long. Pansies thrive in cooler temperatures, and you’ll need to wait until late fall or early winter to plant them when the soil temperature in your area is between 45 to 64 F. You can also get pansy varieties with blue, purple, red, orange, white, or pink flowers that will really add a good mix of color to any garden bed.
Petunias (Buy Seeds Online) are a very popular annual that produces beautiful blooms in a wide range of colors. They will grow to be 6 to 12-inches tall, and 12 to 24 inches wide. Petunias are very vigorous bloomers that need to be grown in fertile soil rich in organic matter, and they need to be fertilized regularly. They also need to be grown in full sun, or they can become leggy, and they also won’t produce as many blooms in low light.
Snapdragon (Buy Seeds Online) is a climbing vine that’s covered in blue, white, or pink trumpet-shaped flowers. This low maintenance vine is easy to manage since it only grows to be 3 to 8 feet tall and 6 feet wide. It also is one of the best cut flowers to grow in Florida, and it’s winter hardy in zones 9 – 11.
Strawflower (Buy Seeds Online) is one of the best container plants for south Florida due to the fact that it’s very drought tolerant. It also stays relatively small since it’s a trailing plant that stays under 6-inches tall, but it will spread out 12 to 36-inches. That makes Strawflower a good choice for borders, or it looks beautiful in a hanging basket with its silver foliage and yellow flowers spilling over the sides.
White Viola (Buy Seeds Online) is another great Florida winter annual that you wouldn’t be able to grow down south in the summer. This delicate flower prefers the cool temperatures in Florida during the winter and in early spring. And best of all it is a prolific bloomer that will produce an endless stream of beautiful white flowers all winter as long as it doesn’t get hit with a hard frost.
Coleus (Buy Seeds Online) is a hardy Florida winter annual that does well in containers, or it can be planted directly into a garden in late fall. This plant will reach a height of 1 to 3-feet tall, and coleus does well in the cooler months in fall, winter, and spring. Coleus also comes in a wide range of different colors and leaf patterns, and best of all they will keep their vibrant color all season long.
Lobelia (Buy Seeds Online) is one of the most delicate Florida winter-blooming plants you can add to your garden. This plant is native to South Africa, but it doesn’t like growing in excessive heat, and to top it off it isn’t very tolerant of frost. That makes Lobelia a great choice for South Florida where it can be used as a striking ground cover.
Marigolds (Buy Seeds Online) are an old fashion garden classic that will add some bright color to your winter garden. The best thing about Marigolds is that they are relatively heat-tolerant, so you can start growing them in Florida in early fall. They also will keep blooming all season if you pinch off any spent blooms before they go to seed. You’ll want to plant marigolds in very fertile but well-drained soil and give them a little fertilizer every two weeks in order to keep them growing strong.
Sunpatiens (Buy Online) make a great Florida winter flower if you’re from the north and you miss growing impatiens in your garden. This special hybrid is a mix of a traditional impatiens species crossed with Impatiens hawkeri, which is a plant native to tropical New Guinea. That makes Sunpatiens far more heat tolerant than regular impatiens, and best of all they can even be planted in full sun.
Lantana (Buy Seeds Online) will thrive in Florida during the winter months since it prefers low humidity and minimal rainfall. A lantana plant will grow to a height of 6 to 12 inches and spread out to be 1.5 to 4-feet wide. Lantana has dark green leaves accented by large flower clusters that change color as they mature. Be sure to plant Lantana in full sun in sandy soil, and you’ll want to water them infrequently to avoid mold, mildew, and root rot.
Winter Jasmine (Buy Online) is a fragrant flower that will bloom in Florida all winter long. It will grow to be a large shrub in warmer climates, and it will reach a mature height of 3 to 8 feet tall. However, it can be grown in containers to keep it from becoming too large and unmanageable. Also, growing it in a container makes it easy to protect it from the strong summer sun in a screened patio, or in a shady spot in your garden.
Fashion Azalea (Buy Online) is an evergreen shrub that you can grow in Florida that will start to bloom in early winter. This azalea has been bred to have larger blossoms that have a more vibrant color than most common azalea varietals. That gives it a more tropical flare compared to your standard garden variety azalea, which makes it a perfect fit for a Florida landscape design.
Firespike (Buy Seeds Online) is a showy plant with dark green leaves topped with bright red flowers. This plant is native to Central America, and contrary to popular belief it’s not a native Florida flower, but it has naturalized across the Florida peninsula,. In later summer and early fall, the plant will start to produce large flower spikes that will bloom throughout the winter. In frost-free areas, Firespike will grow as an evergreen shrub, but in zones 8 and 9 it will need to be replanted like most annual flowers. Firespike is also a favorite nectar source for hummingbirds and other pollinators.
Bacopa (Buy Seeds Online) is a vigorous plant that will quickly produce a dense flowering ground cover. It also does well when planted in hanging baskets, and it requires minimal care. It is also very drought tolerant since it will survive long periods without water, but when it drys out Bacopa will drop its blooms to help conserve moisture. Bacopa was only originally available with white flowers, but now you can get Bacopa with blue, pink, and lavender blossoms.
Rieger Begonia (Buy Bulbs Online) is a special type of begonia that was bred to bloom during the winter months. That makes it a great Florida winter flower if you want to grow begonias all year long. They will start to bloom once the days start to get shorter, and cooler temperatures at night (60 F) will also help encourage blooms. However, begonias are still tropical plants, and they aren’t frost-tolerant, which makes them better suited for gardens in South Florida
Nemesia (Buy Seeds Online) is an annual flower that’s starting to make a name for itself in cool-season gardens. Recent advancements in plant breeding have made Nemesia more heat tolerant, so you can plant it in late fall in Florida. It also now comes in more colors than ever before (blue, purple, red, orange, white, pink, and yellow).
Bolivian Sunset Gloxinia
Bolivian Sunset Gloxinia (Buy Seeds Online) is one of the best Florida winter-blooming plants for a small container garden. It likes to grow in a partially shaded spot in well-drained soil that’s rich in organic matter. It also stays very compact, but don’t let that fool you since this plant is a real show stopper since it produces beautiful bright red and orange flowers atop deep dark green foliage.