7 Best Perennial Flowers for Texas Heat That Are Heat Tolerant

Best Perennial Flowers for Texas Heat

Choosing the best perennial flowers for the intense Texas heat is essential for any gardener looking to create a vibrant and sustainable garden. In Texas, where temperatures often soar, and conditions can be harsh, selecting plants that are not only resilient but also thrive in high heat and sporadic rainfall is key to a flourishing landscape.

Perennials are a particularly wise choice because they return year after year, reducing the need for replanting and maintenance. These plants have adapted to cope with the local climate, often requiring less water and care than their less hardy counterparts.

Enhancing Perennial Growth

Opting for the right perennials can lead to a beautiful, colorful garden that withstands the summer heat, attracts local wildlife such as pollinators, and offers a sustainable option that complements the local ecosystem.

1. Butterfly Bush

texas perennials plants

The Buddleia is a shrub or short-lived small tree that was named for an English rector and botanist, the Reverend Adam Buddle. Butterfly bush is hard to beat for sheer flower power. These easy, sun-loving shrubs come in an array of rich colors, bloom continuously from summer to fall, and attract butterflies and hummingbirds by the score. 

The varieties that grow well here in Texas are often called Butterfly Bush. Because they are so attractive to butterflies, moths, and bees. Butterfly bush needs full sun and perfect drainage. It grow in clay soil, but avoid over-watering.

The medicinal butterfly bush may be useful as a diuretic and pain reliever with powerful antimicrobial activity. In traditional Chinese medicine, Buddleja flower buds (mi meng hua) are used for eye complaints, including bloodshot eyes, eye secretion,s and sensitivity to light.

2. Purple Cone Flowers

north texas perennials

Echinacea, also known as the purple coneflower, is an herbal medicine that has been used for centuries, customarily as a treatment for the common cold, coughs, bronchitis, upper respiratory infections, and some inflammatory conditions.

Research on echinacea, including clinical trials, is limited and largely in German. These sun-loving perennials form large clumps of long-stemmed, very showy flowers with drooping to horizontal rays and a beehive-like central cone. The plants bloom over a long period in summer and may continue sporadically until frost.

3. Bee Balm

perennials for north texas

Scarlet beebalm is aromatic herb a member of the mint family. It is also known by the common names bergamot, Oswego tea, and crimson beebalm. A member of the mint family, bee balm, is used in teas, and it can help with digestive issues, bloating, sore throats, and nausea.

Bee balm is a natural antiseptic that, when applied topically, can help with bee stings, rashes, and minor wounds. It does best in full sun, though it will grow in part shade. Though it tends to stretch and become leggy over time, it is best to grow it in full sun.

Bee balm thrives in evenly moist, organic soil. It can tolerate lighter soil, but richer soil encourages taller, stronger specimens.

4. The Bird of Paradise

flowers that grow in texas

The bird of paradise flower symbolizes joyfulness, paradise, freedom, anticipation, and excitement. Furthermore, it represents faithfulness, love, and thoughtfulness while being the official flower of the ninth wedding anniversary. It alsorepresentsf having a good perspective on life.

Bird of paradise is a tropical plant that is hardy in temperatures over 60°F but does best in temperatures between 65 and 80°F. It is relatively hardy and adapts to a wide spectrum of light conditions from direct sun to low, indirect light, but will flourish in a sunny spot. Water and humidity are important to keep your Bird of Paradise healthy.

Consistent watering is needed to keep the soil moist but never wet or soggy. The bird of paradise plant has stunning flowers. It is an ideal houseplant because it is low-maintenance and is considered minimally toxic to humans. 

5. Fall Aster

best perennials for north texas full sun

The most recent Latin name is Symphyotrichum oblongifolium, although a synonymous Latin name, Aster oblongifolius, is still used. Fall aster belongs to the Asteraceae, or aster, family. Either dried or fresh, the flowers and leaves of the Aster plant can be eaten.

However, they are most commonly used nowadays in herbal teas, fresh in salads, or used as garnish. It has several health benefits and has traditionally been used in the treatment of weak skin, pain, fevers, and diarrhea. It is winter-hardy to USDA Zones 3 to 8. Cold will not be an issue for this plant.

The flowers do best when the temperatures are cooler in the late summer and fall. Since asters prefer moist soil, it is important that they receive enough water/precipitation to keep them growing during hot and/or dry stretches.

6. Plumbago

best perennials for north texas

Plumbago auriculata, commonly called cape leadwort or cape plumbago, is native to South Africa. It is a weak-stemmed perennial evergreen shrub that grows 6-7′ tall and 8-10′ wide in its native habitat. Plumbago is used traditionally to treat warts, broken bones, and wounds. I

t is taken as a snuff for headaches and as an emetic to dispel bad dreams. A stick of the plant is placed in the thatch of huts to ward off lightning. Plant plumbago any time of the year. It generally looks its best when planted in full sun and well-drained soil.

Both species require regular watering until established but are moderately drought-tolerant afterward. Plumbago grows quickly, but excess growth can be pruned off at any point throughout the year.

7. Lantanas

best perennials for north texas

Lantana is aperennial vine, a flowering shrub in warm zones, and an annual shrub in places with frosty winters. Fast-growing lantana produces rounded clusters of small, brightly colored flowers in yellow, orange, white, red, pink, blue, or purple and is often used in hanging baskets or ground covers. Lantana is toxic to dogs, cats, and horses.

Studies conducted in India have found that Lantana leaves can display antimicrobial, fungicidal, and insecticidal properties. Lantana camara stalks have been used in the construction of furniture, such as chairs and tables.

Lantana grows best in full sun conditions and requires at least six hours of direct sunlight, preferring neutral, well-draining soil and temperatures above 55 degrees Fahrenheit.

Floral Signals and Pest Control


Texas has a diverse climate ranging from arid in the west to humid in the east. Selecting perennials that are well-suited to these specific conditions ensures they thrive, reducing the need for excessive watering, pest control, and other maintenance. Perennials return for multiple seasons, providing long-term landscaping solutions. This can be more cost-effective than planting annuals every year.

In Texas, the best perennial flowers to withstand the intense heat include a range of heat-tolerant shrubs and plants. These heat-tolerant plants are ideal for a Texas garden, thriving in both partial shade and full sun. Rock Rose, with its pink flowers and varieties with yellow blooms, lavender, and white blooms, provides a vibrant display from early spring onwards.

Ground cover species excel in heat and are drought-resistant, making them perfect for both perennial garden and container gardens. Overall, choosing plants for Texas that are robust and heat tolerant ensures a garden remains lush and colorful despite the challenging climate.

Johan Perez
Johan Perez is an experienced agriculturalist with over twenty years in the field. He holds a Ph.D. in Agricultural Sciences and has contributed extensively to research on sustainable farming practices. Johan has also written for numerous agricultural periodicals, offering expert advice on farming technologies and methods. In his free time, he enjoys outdoor adventures, which often inform his professional insights into ecological agriculture.

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