If you are looking for reliable summer color check out the ever popular portulaca. At one time only the portulaca moss rose, also know as the Mexican rose was offered to home gardeners. Then growers added purslane also a family member.
Both flowers just smile at the sun not minding the hot summer days. Older varieties often closed their flowers shorting after opening during the early morning hours or when an insect visited the blossoms - now most now stay open for the entire day.
Portulaca and purslane can be added to the flower garden, placed in planters or suspended in hanging baskets. They do have two major needs - full sun and good drainage.
Here are a few more tips to enjoy the flowers this summer.
Plant in nematode free soil.
Space moss rose 6- to 8-inches apart; purslane 12- to 14-inches.
Water when the surface soil begins to feel dry to the touch.
Feed monthly with a 20-20-20 or similar fertilizer.
Sow seeds of moss rose every 4 to 6 weeks; make cuttings of purslane as needed.
Portulaca plantings can be continued into the fall months until night temperatures begin to drop below 60 degrees and the days shorten.