Red, White, & Blue Annual Flowers

by Laurel Aiello

The Fourth of July is full of excitement and color, with red, white, and blue flags, streamers, fireworks, and sweet treats adding to the festivities. Flower pots bursting with patriotic blooms can also bring color to your patio for guests to enjoy as you grill burgers or watch the parades go by. Here are some of our favorite annual flowers to decorate with on Independence Day.

Fiery Red Annuals

Bright red blooms are the star of any Fourth of July flower display, standing out against a backdrop of white and blue blooms that balance their heat. Red Diana and Coronet dianthus are especially festive choices for patio pots in full sun, with striking red flowers that pop up in bunches above their tidy, compact leaves. Scarlet blanket flowers also add heat to sunny areas as their bright red petals fade into sunny yellow tips among velvety green foliage. For massive red blooms that’ll stop anyone in their tracks, plant dahlias or gerbera daisies. 


You can also spark up your hanging baskets with bright red blooms that trail over the edges, creating a cascading display that mimics fireworks falling from the sky. Proven Winners’ red Superbenas produce continuous bursts of color in trailing clusters of small flowers, and red Supertunias are bold and bright with large flowers that trail effortlessly down the sides of the pot. Proven Winners’ red Superbells calibrachoas also make a statement, with smaller red flowers that have spectacular color and, for varieties like the Double Ruby, rose-like double petals in deep red. Calibrachoas, petunias, and verbena all thrive in the July heat, making them the perfect trailing annuals for west- and south-facing patios. 

However, not all red annuals need full sun to put on a floral firework display. Proven Winners’ new guinea impatiens and nonstop begonias thrive in part sun and produce stunning flowers all summer long. Pot them in containers to add “thrillers” to a shady part of your patio, or plant them under a canopy of trees that everyone can see. 

Beautiful Blue Blooms

Mystic Spires Salvia

Blue flowers contrast fiery red blooms with cool tones, creating a festive and eye-catching color combo. For example, salvia have semi-tubular flowers that attract the bees, butterflies and hummingbirds while adding height and shades of blue to patio pots. Plant Proven Winners’ Black & Blue Salvia for a unique look with dark stems and electric blue blooms, or opt for Mystic Spires salvia for denser clusters of deep blue flowers. All annual salvias love the heat and are semi drought-tolerant.

Shorter blue annuals that mound and trail over the sides of pots include midnight petunias with large, deep blue flowers and Proven Winners’ Blue My Mind Dwarf Morning Glory, which produces smaller bright blue flowers atop silvery-green leaves. If you’re looking for a blue annual vine to climb up a flag pole or a tree above a sunny annual bed, plant a morning glory or a passion flower. 

Many blue annuals thrive in shady areas and complement red impatiens and begonias with cool tones. Proven Winners’ Summer Wave Large Blue Wishbone Flower has large, indigo petals that form a tubular shape and trailing foliage that waterfalls over the edge of the pot. Lobelia varieties also have a trailing growth habit but with much smaller flowers in shades of blue. If you’re looking for something more compact, the Ariella ageratum has tiny blue flowers that fluff up in clusters above mounding foliage. 

Blending with White Flowers

Proven Winners’ White Superbenas

When planting red, white and blue annual arrangements, the white flowers are just as important as the red and blue. Proven Winners’ white Superbenas, Supertunias and Superbells bring a classic appearance to any patriotic flower display, while daisy-like flowers, like white Argyranthemums, add a more wild, untamed look. One of our favorites is Proven Winners’ Pure White Butterfly Marguerite Daisy. 

White flowers can also accent large red and blue blooms with little patches of white. In sunny areas, white alyssum creates a bed of small white flowers around the edges of big colorful blooms. In shady areas, Proven Winners’ Diamond Frost Euphorbia helps blend red and blue flowers by scattering tiny white flecks among them. Bacopa offers a happy medium, with dime-sized white flowers that add contrast without getting lost. 

Whether you blend red and blue blooms with white flowers or you make a statement with each color, your Fourth of July annuals are sure to brighten any landscape. So get creative with your floral color palette this holiday—and remember, your local nursery is here to help.

Originally published on June 30th, 2023.