DownComment IconEmail IconFacebook IconGoogle Plus IconGrid IconInstagram IconLinkedin IconList IconMenu IconMinus IconPinterest IconPlus IconRss IconSave IconSearch IconShare IconShopping Cart IconSpeech BubbleSnapchat IconTumblr IconTwitter IconWhatsapp IconYoutube Icon

Border phlox, Summer phlox (Phlox paniculata)

Quick facts and care essentials

• Zones 1-14, 18-21, 27-43
• Full sun; flowers may fade in hot-summer climates
• Regular watering

Border phlox is deservedly popular for the showy, dome-shaped clusters of fragrant flowers it produces throughout the summer. Plants reach 2 to 4 feet tall and almost as wide, making a dramatic addition to the border. Leaves are dark green, 3 to 6 inches long; individual flowers are just about an inch across and come in a wide variety of colors.

Given the growing conditions it needs, phlox will reward you with healthy foliage and a long bloom season. Soil must be rich and well drained; dig planting beds deep and amend well with organic matter such as compost or well-rotted manure. Fertilize annually in spring. Deadhead spent blooms, since seedlings will not bloom true to the parent. Divide every 2 to 3 years, replanting only divisions from a clump's edges.

Powdery mildew can cause serious problems in hot, humid areas. To combat it, plant mildew-resistant varieties such as 'Ice Cap'. Cut mildew-infected plants to the ground each fall; then discard the cut-off portions and any debris.