35 Flowers That Grow in Florida: A Comprehensive Guide to Stunning Species

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Florida’s diverse climate and rich soil make it an ideal environment for various types of flowers. From native species to exotics, the sunshine state offers a plethora of blooming options for gardeners and nature enthusiasts alike.

In this article, we are going to explore 32 different flowers thriving in Florida. These flowers will be grouped under different categories, making it easier for readers to choose the perfect bloom for their garden or simply to appreciate their beauty. Let’s start by introducing some common plant groups that will be categorized under the h2 titles throughout the article.

Native Wildflowers

Florida is home to a diverse range of native wildflowers that add beauty and color to its landscapes. These flowers have adapted to the climate and soil conditions and often require less maintenance, making them a great choice for gardening enthusiasts. In this section, we’ll explore some popular native wildflowers that thrive in Florida’s environment.

Tickseed

Tickseed, also known as Coreopsis, is the state wildflower of Florida. This sun-loving plant produces vibrant, daisy-like flowers that come in shades of yellow, orange, and red. They attract pollinators like butterflies and bees, making them an eco-friendly addition to any garden.

Blanket Flower

Gaillardia, commonly called Blanket Flower, is another favorite wildflower that grows in Florida. It’s known for its stunning, warm-colored flowers that consist of vibrant red and orange hues. With their heat and drought-tolerant qualities, these flowers are perfect for Florida’s sunny climate.

Lanceleaf Coreopsis

Lanceleaf Coreopsis is a perennial wildflower known for its bright yellow, daisy-like blooms. It’s well-adapted to Florida’s sandy soils and can tolerate both full sun and partial shade. This low-maintenance plant is a popular choice for meadows, borders, and naturalized landscapes.

Native Lantana

Florida’s native Lantana (Lantana depressa) is a beautiful wildflower that produces small, colorful flower clusters in shades of yellow, orange, and pink. This drought-tolerant plant grows well in sandy soils and attracts butterflies, native bees, and other pollinators to the garden.

Scarlet Salvia

Also known as Tropical Sage, Scarlet Salvia (Salvia coccinea) is a popular native flower in Florida that boasts striking red tubular flowers. This perennial plant is an excellent choice for attracting hummingbirds and adds a touch of elegance to any landscape.

Blue Eyed Grass

Sisyrinchium angustifolium, commonly referred to as Blue Eyed Grass, is a charming wildflower that features small, star-shaped, blue flowers with a yellow center. This perennial plant thrives in moist, well-draining soils and is perfect for adding a pop of color to wetland areas, meadows, and rain gardens.

Fringed Bluestar

Amsonia ciliata, or Fringed Bluestar, is a native Florida wildflower known for its beautiful clusters of pale blue, star-shaped flowers. This perennial plant attracts butterflies and provides a lovely, soft texture to any landscape with its feathery foliage.

Lyreleaf Sage

The Lyreleaf Sage (Salvia lyrata) is a versatile wildflower that produces beautiful spikes of purple-blue flowers. It grows well in various conditions, from full sun to partial shade, and can tolerate both drought and humid environments. It is an attractive addition to woodland gardens and landscaped areas.

Orchids

Florida is home to a variety of beautiful and unique orchids. These captivating flowers can be found in various habitats, including swamps, forests, and roadside ditches. In this section, we will explore some of the most popular orchid species in Florida.

Encyclia Tampensis

Also known as the Florida butterfly orchid, Encyclia tampensis is an epiphytic orchid that grows on tree branches. It is characterized by its yellowish-green flowers with a central lip that looks like a butterfly. This orchid blooms from May to July and can be found in a variety of habitats, including hammocks and cypress swamps.

Eulophia Ecristata

Eulophia ecristata is a terrestrial orchid native to Florida. It grows in sandy, well-drained soils and blooms from late spring to early summer. The flowers of this orchid are greenish-yellow with brownish-purple markings, making it an attractive addition to any garden or landscape.

Polyradicion Lindenii

Polyradicion lindenii, commonly known as the ghost orchid, is a rare and fascinating orchid species found in Florida. It is an epiphytic orchid that grows on tree trunks and branches in swampy habitats. The ghost orchid produces large, white flowers with long, trailing petals, creating an ethereal appearance.

Cymbidium

Cymbidium is a genus of orchids with over 50 species, and some of them can be found in Florida. These orchids are generally easy to grow and produce long-lasting, vibrant flowers in various colors. Cymbidium orchids can be grown in pots, making them a popular choice for orchid enthusiasts and gardeners alike.

Lady Slipper

Lady slipper orchids belong to the genus Spiranthes, which includes around 50 terrestrial orchids, many native to Florida. These orchids are known for their upright, twisted flower spikes that grow along roadsides and in open woodlands. The small, white flowers are arranged in a spiral pattern, resembling a lady’s slipper.

Aquatic Flowers

Florida is home to a diverse array of aquatic flowers, which add beauty and provide vital habitat for aquatic animals. In this section, we will explore some of the fascinating aquatic flowers that thrive in the Sunshine State, including Duck Potato, Water Lilies, Aquatic Milkweed, Pickerelweed, Golden Canna, and Blueflag Iris.

Duck Potato

Duck Potato (Sagittaria latifolia) is a native Florida plant that produces arrow-shaped leaves and elegant white flowers. Growing in shallow waters, Duck Potato provides excellent food and shelter for aquatic life, including ducks and other waterfowl. This plant prefers slow-flowing streams or ponds and can cover a large area quickly, creating a lush aquatic environment.

Water Lilies

Water Lilies are among the most iconic aquatic flowers, known for their large, floating leaves called lily pads, and their vibrant blooms. In Florida, Water Lilies can produce a range of colors, such as white, purple, pink, blue, yellow, orange, red, and peach. These plants not only beautify Florida waters, but they also help clean the water and provide essential shelter for fish and other aquatic animals.

Aquatic Milkweed

Aquatic Milkweed (Asclepias perennis) is a native Florida plant that produces clusters of delicate white or pink flowers. Often found alongside lakes, streams, or marshes, Aquatic Milkweed attracts butterflies, bees, and other pollinators. This plant also serves as an important host for the Monarch butterfly, who lays its eggs on the leaves for its caterpillars to feed on.

Pickerelweed

Pickerelweed (Pontederia cordata) is characterized by its heart-shaped leaves and spike-like clusters of blue, lavender, or white flowers. Thriving in shallow water and wetlands, Pickerelweed provides habitat for various aquatic life and helps stabilize shorelines. The plant is also beneficial for pollinators, attracting bees, butterflies, and hummingbirds alike.

Golden Canna

Golden Canna (Canna flaccida) is a native aquatic plant that produces tall stalks with large, yellow flowers. Able to grow in both shallow water and moist soil, Golden Canna is a versatile addition to any Florida water garden or pond. The plant’s striking blooms and lush, green foliage create an eye-catching display while providing essential habitat for aquatic species.

Blueflag Iris

Blueflag Iris (Iris virginica) is a beautiful aquatic flower with sword-like leaves and showy blue, purple, or white flowers. Found in Florida’s wetlands and along the edges of ponds or streams, Blueflag Iris is well-adapted to the fluctuating water levels typical in these environments. The elegant, colorful blooms attract pollinators, while the plant’s dense growth provides shelter for a variety of aquatic animals.

Tropical Flowers

Florida’s climate allows for a wide variety of tropical flowers to thrive. Many of these plants are popular with gardeners and landscapers due to their vibrant colors and striking appearances. In this section, we will discuss some of the most popular tropical flowers that grow in Florida, highlighting each species’ characteristics and growing requirements.

Mahogany Fern

The Mahogany Fern is a beautiful tropical plant that can be grown in Florida’s shady areas. This fern has glossy, dark green leaves and is well-suited for use in garden borders or as a ground cover. It prefers moist, well-draining soil and partial to full shade conditions.

Bougainvillea

Bougainvillea is a stunning flowering plant that produces vibrant, colorful bracts in various shades of pink, red, purple, and yellow. This versatile plant can grow as a shrub, vine, or even a small tree, making it ideal for use in different types of gardens. Plant it in full sun, and provide well-drained soil for optimal growth.

Hibiscus

Among the most iconic tropical flowers, the Hibiscus plant produces large, showy blooms in shades of red, yellow, pink, and white. This plant thrives in full sun and well-drained, slightly acidic soil. With proper care, Hibiscus plants can bloom continuously throughout the year, adding vibrant color to any Florida garden.

Frangipani

Also known as Plumeria, the Frangipani tree produces fragrant, waxy flowers in a variety of colors, including white, yellow, pink, and red. It is highly adaptable and can grow in sandy or loamy soil, provided it drains well. The Frangipani prefers full sun and can tolerate mild salt spray, making it an ideal choice for coastal gardens.

Bird of Paradise

With its boldly colored flowers resembling the shape of a bird in flight, the Bird of Paradise plant is a popular choice for tropical gardens. It can grow several feet tall, thriving in well-draining soil and partial to full sun exposure. Consider providing some protection from strong winds to prevent damage to the delicate blossoms.

Heliconia

Heliconia plants are known for their striking, exotic flowers, which can come in shades of red, orange, and yellow. These plants can grow in partial shade or full sun and prefer rich, well-draining soil. Add a touch of tropical flair to your garden by using Heliconia as a focal point or planting in clusters for a stunning visual effect.

Gardenia

Gardenias are popular for their enchanting fragrance and showy, white flowers. They can be grown in Florida gardens as shrubs or small trees, and thrive in well-draining, acidic soil with a preference for partial shade. Regular pruning can maintain their shape and encourage bushier growth, while proper fertilization will promote more abundant blooms.

African Lily

Also known as Agapanthus, the African Lily is a low-maintenance plant that produces striking blue, purple or white flowers atop tall, slender stems. It can tolerate partial shade or full sun and prefers well-draining, sandy, or loamy soil. African Lilies, with their long bloom time, make a lovely addition to garden borders and can also be grown in containers.

Butterfly Attracting Flowers

Creating a garden space that attracts butterflies can be both rewarding and visually stunning. Certain flowers are more likely to draw butterflies in, thanks to their nectar content and appealing colors. Here, we present eight exceptional flowers for a butterfly garden in Florida.

Mexican Sunflower

The Mexican Sunflower (Tithonia rotundifolia) produces vibrant, orange blooms that not only catch the eye, but also attract butterflies. This annual flower is easy to grow and thrives in Florida’s sunny climate.

Pentas

Also known as star flower, Pentas (Pentas lanceolata) is a must-have for butterfly gardens. With clusters of star-shaped flowers in various colors such as red, pink, purple, and white, this plant’s dark green foliage serves as an attractive contrast, drawing butterflies in.

Milkweed

Milkweed (Asclepias spp.) is an essential plant for any butterfly garden as it is a primary host plant for the larvae of the Monarch butterfly. This native Florida plant comes in different varieties, each with their own unique characteristics and colors, making it a great option for attracting butterflies.

Purple Coneflower

The Purple Coneflower (Echinacea purpurea) is known for its striking purple petals and cone-shaped center. This perennial flower not only attracts butterflies but also adds a touch of color to any garden.

Zinnia

Zinnias (Zinnia spp.) are bright, cheerful flowers that are enjoyed by butterflies and gardeners alike. With a variety of colors to choose from, these annuals provide season-long nectar sources for butterflies.

Butterfly Bush

The Butterfly Bush (Buddleja spp.) is aptly named for its ability to attract various butterfly species. This shrub produces elongated clusters of flowers in shades of purple, pink, and white, providing both shelter and nectar for visiting butterflies.

Goldenrod

Goldenrod (Solidago spp.) is a native Florida plant with vibrant yellow flowers. Blooming in the late summer and fall, it provides essential late-season nectar for butterflies, making it an important addition to any butterfly garden.

Firebush

Firebush (Hamelia patens) is a Florida native that produces tubular red-orange flowers, attracting both butterflies and hummingbirds. This shrub is easy to grow and offers both nectar and shelter for our winged friends.