Welcome to my early summer flower garden tour! Follow along as I show you which flowers bloomed in my cottage-style garden and cut flower garden in late June and early July.
The beginning of summer is that time of year when all of the hard work has paid off and the flower garden comes alive with a burst of color and fabulous fragrances. Early summer blooms such as lilies, zinnias, hydrangeas, daisies, and sunflowers really brightened up my outdoor spaces.
I’m a self-taught hobby gardener, not a Master Gardener. Everything I share with you on my blog is my personal opinion and things that have worked for me personally.
The Early Summer Cottage Garden
I know we’ve already hit the mid-summer mark with August here, but I wanted to give you a look at what the growing season brought after the spring season.
When I share the mid-summer garden next month you will see an entirely different look with more black-eyed Susans, sedum autumn joy, asters, and different varieties of dahlias.
Our Front Flower Garden View
The view above shows the early summer flowers in my pollinator garden. My entire garden really is pollinator friendly but the purple blazing star (Liatris) and coneflowers are always buzzing with bees.
I’ve had many questions about where my front garden is located. We are looking out at a saltwater bay in the Puget Sound. It’s not a lake like most people think. the tides go in and out throughout the day and there is a lot of wildlife here.
These hardy and vibrant summer blooms are one of my favorites. Coneflowers have a daisy-like flower head and a unique center cone, attracting bees and butterflies all through the season.
Also known as echinacea, coneflower blooms in the summer season for a longer period than most perennials. They also look great planted in garden containers.
As you can see here, I was able to find several different colors other than the popular purple coneflower.
I even found my favorite coneflower color, white. This is when I first planted it after finding it at the nursery the same day.
This is what it looks like a week later. The white flowers are just so calming to me.
I think I’m most excited about my hydrangeas this summer.
I had a couple of hydrangea bushes that didn’t bloom until September and were very short-lived. Fortunately, whatever happened last summer did not repeat itself.
This is what they started out like in June.
And here they are in July.
What fascinates me about this hydrangea bush is that there are a few pink flower heads in with the blue blooms. Usually, the color is determined by the soil so to have both colors on one plant seems very peculiar.
Here’s another plant next to it with a darker blue color.
As for these perennial flowers, they get some early morning sun but partial shade in the afternoon and thrive in this location.
The eyeliner lily is one of my favorites and has such a unique appearance. This was one of the first lily varieties to bloom in my garden.
This variety of lilies brightened up the early summer garden and continues with its stunning pop of color in the August flower beds.
Their sweet fragrance fills the air and pollinators such as bees and butterflies are attracted to this stunning garden flower.
Garden Show Reblooming Daylily
What I love about the reblooming lilies is that the blooms keep coming back all season long.
This variety has a lavender-mauve flower head with a yellow center. The fragrance actually keeps the deer and rabbits away.
Daylily Ageless Beauty
This daylily is the most colorful. Its thick, creamy white petals are decorated with a raspberry-red throat and matching trim and are definitely a conversation starter when I’m giving a summer garden tour.
Primal Scream Daylily
I don’t have many orange flowers in my early summer garden so these daylilies are truly one-of-a-kind for me.
Did you know that a daylily will bloom for just one day? The good news is that they produce numerous buds, so the flowering plant has flowers throughout the season.
These climbing vines make such a statement as they grow up my arbor in early summer.
Did you know that clematis’ roots should be shaded? A flat stone can be most helpful, especially for the large-flowered varieties.
In my early summer garden, I have the most beautiful colors of gladiolus. There are deep purples, rich reds, and shades of pink. For a taller plant like gladiolus, it’s important to stake them or they will definitely fall over without support.
They make the most gorgeous cut flowers!
I love that allium is not just for the spring season.
The drumstick variety blooms in July but as you can see, this flower makes quite an impression even before its beautiful purple color has taken over the flower head.
Here they are in full bloom. This was one of my favorite flowers blooming in the early summer garden this year. They are so unique looking and the bees go crazy over them.
You can see them mixed in with the daisies along the white picket fence.
I love this flower bed in the summer. Early summer looks like this with the allium and daisies. Mid-summer has an entirely new look with purple phlox and golden-yellow black-eyed Susans.
And speaking of daisies, they are the happiest flower in the summer garden, don’t you think?
The daisies started blooming right around the 4th of July and bloom through July. They’re easy to care for as long as you support the taller daisies so they don’t fall over, and divide them when the plant clump gets too big.
I bought these Daisy Seeds or Crazy Daisies last year towards the end of the year so I didn’t really get to see how pretty they were until this season.
I have a love/hate relationship with these yellow flowers, also known as Lily of the Incas or Peruvian Lily.
They’re a beautiful cut flower and have quite a long vase life. That’s the good news.
The bad news is that it is extremely invasive and I have been actually trying to get it out of my garden for years with no luck. Be very careful with where you plant them if you decide to grow them in your summer garden.
When it comes to charm, Veronica wins the prize.
This pretty perennial plant has slender spikes of tiny flowers. I bought a few plants this season in purple and blue shades.
I’m growing these flowers in my pollinator garden along with the coneflowers and blazing stars. The butterflies and bees love them.
The Early Summer Cut Flower Garden
Now we’re at my favorite part of the garden tour! Let’s take a look at the cut flower garden.
About the Cutting Garden
I am growing vegetables along with my flowers in the raised garden beds. The tomatoes and zucchini do very well growing alongside the flowering plants. And they really benefit from great pollination.
The flower seedlings were taken from the greenhouse and transplanted to the cut flower garden in late spring. They were SO TINY!
Small plants were all that the cut flower garden was growing in June. The seedlings were just starting to take off but there were few blooms.
This garden space has raised beds and containers and is located in the full sun. Two of the beds are 4’x4′ and 2 are 4’x8′. Everything is watered by a drip and sprinkler system that is on a timer. It has made my life so much easier!
By the end of June, the garden you saw in the previous picture had transformed.
It still wasn’t in full bloom like it is in August, but cut flowers like zinnias, snapdragons, bachelor’s buttons, sweet peas, and some strawflowers were starting to flower.
We did not get the hot weather that we had gotten the last year or two in June so there was no need for shade cloth which was such a relief.
In my early summer garden, the zinnias were one of the earliest bloomers. Their daisy-like petals and vibrant colors make this cut flower so easy to fall in love with.
This is what the zinnias looked like in the first part of June.
The seed germination of zinnia seeds is so quick. I saw growth popping out of the soil in just a few days.
There are so many different varieties I have grown in the past few years but I always come back to lilliput zinnias because of how bright and beautiful the flower petals are.
This is the perfect cut flower for new gardeners…they are so easy!
I will say that I had some pest problems with my zinnias at the beginning of the summer season. But I cut all the damaged foliage off the plants and sprayed them with both neem oil and insecticidal soap and now they look pretty healthy.
Cut Flower Volunteers
A volunteer flower in the garden is like a surprise gift from nature. It’s a plant that grows on its own, without being intentionally planted by the gardener.
These flowers are usually the result of seeds dropped by previous plants or carried by the wind or birds.
Here are a couple of huge surprises growing in my cut flower garden this summer.
Chocolate Lace Flower Dara
This was the best surprise for me.
I grew the chocolate lace flower last year in the garden and liked it. But it didn’t really perform as well as I would have liked. So I decided to pass on it this year.
My garden had other plans. I found several plants growing out of the brick pavers and was shocked that they even survived without being watered.
Needless to say, I’ll be growing them again next year, and I’m sure there will be some other plants coming up out of the corners of the garden as well.
Also known as cornflower, these bachelor’s buttons basically came back on their own. Growing up through the pavers and with little water, these plants still thrived in the early summer garden this year.
Here’s another view. I love the color of the flowers and how whimsical they look. And of course, the pollinators love them.
The only issue I have with bachelor’s buttons is that I can never keep up with deadheading enough to keep them looking healthy and tidy. They always seem to look tired because of all the spent flower heads mixed in.
Do you like growing bachelor’s buttons?
These tall and majestic flowers have the sunniest of blooms. The birds and the bees love them as well.
I grew 3 different varieties this year. On the back of the seed packet, it says you can direct sow them but I found that the best way for me to grow sunflowers is to start the seedlings in the greenhouse, Then I transplanted them after the average last frost date.
This way the birds didn’t pluck the seeds up before they started to grow.
This is the most common-looking sunflower variety that I had in my early summer garden. They are also the tallest of the three.
The Frilly variety is more of a whimsical take on the summer sunflower. I would say that this variety gave me the most blooms.
Pro Cut White Lite
This variety didn’t give me as many blooms but I loved how different it looked in the garden from the others.
I love how pretty the Sherbet Toned Chantilly mix snapdragons look in my cut flower garden. The orange and pink flowers are the perfect color combination.
The bees and butterflies love snapdragon’s unique snap-like blooms.
Once these flowers are established they’re easy to care for. Just make sure you are providing support for them or they can topple over and break.
Here’s a pretty summer annual that brings a touch of whimsy to the garden.
Cosmos are very easy to grow and germinate quickly, making them perfect for any gardener, experienced, or beginner.
They have almost a carefree, wildflower vibe and attract pollinators to the garden.
I grew the sea shells mix cosmos variety.
And of course, one of my favorites, double click cosmos.
These blooms look great in any summer flower bouquet and the feathery foliage is an extra added bonus.
I always grow my tried and true Floret Flower strawflowers from seed. These unique annual flowers have papery petals that retain their color and form even after they dry.
But this year I also bought a different variety ( I can’t remember which or where I got them) and I hate to say it but I was underwhelmed.
The blooms did not last long at all and they were much shorter than the others I’m used to growing.
I’ll share the apricot mix and frosted sulpher strawflowers with you on the next tour. They really started looking beautiful at the end of July.
I had a shocker this season.
Dahlias generally don’t bloom until the middle of July. But I had blooms as early as the 4th of July this year. I’m not sure why but I won’t complain!
Unfortunately, I wasn’t as diligent as I usually am about pinching the center of my dahlias when they reach a foot or so. I was on a boat trip in May and missed the opportunity.
I am trying to cut back the centers of the really tall dahlia plants right now though. They’re not nearly as bushy as they should be and some of them are a bit scrawny.
Here’s one of the first dahlias that bloomed in the garden early in the summer.
Dahlias are one of the last flowers to bloom in my garden. As long as there isn’t a lot of heavy rain, they should last until the average first frost date of the season. They will literally turn black after the first hard freeze.
The best time to dig up and store dahlia tubers for the winter is before your area has a deep frost.
The cafe au lait dahlia variety is my very favorite!
Be sure to support your dahlias so they don’t break off or fall over, especially large flower head dinner plate varieties like this one. Just the weight of the flower will topple the plant over.
Dahlias are such beautiful flowers and look stunning in any summer floral arrangement.
My only wish when it comes to annual sweet peas is that they would last longer in the summer garden. I had to take them out of the garden in early August.
They are the most delicate-looking and sweet-smelling bloom I’ve ever grown. They have gracefully climbed my arbors, trellises, and along my picket fences throughout the years.
Sweet peas are the first seeds I sow in the greenhouse in February and they germinate quickly.
I grew 4 varieties this summer.
This annual has papery blooms and is another great option for dry flowers. Statice has clusters that look like tiny stars.
They look gorgeous in any flower arrangement but the best part about statice for me is drying them. They seem to last forever tied to my kitchen pot rack.
From the stunning sunflowers to the graceful lilies, charming daisies, and more, my early summer garden is such a haven for me.
Sometimes I can’t believe that I grew the flowers that are here.
Now is the perfect time to reflect on how your garden performed in early summer, which plants you want to bring back, and any lessons you learned along the way.
If you have any questions or additional suggestions, feel free to share them in the comments below. And be sure to share this blog post link with anyone who may find these gardening tips useful.
Until next time,
Other Posts for You to Enjoy
- Natural and Organic Methods for Pest Control in the Garden
- 31 Charming Vintage and Antique Garden Decor Ideas
- Ultimate Guide to Grow and Care for Hydrangeas for Beginners
- How to Attract Pollinators to Your Summer Garden
- The Benefits of Mulching Your Garden Beds
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