Pentas (Pentas lanceolata) are a favorite among many gardeners for their robust and sensational color, especially during the summer months. In many states, they are considered an annual. Here in Florida; however, these bloomers are considered a perennial – allowing us to enjoy them in our fall and winter months.
Even as I write this post in January, our garden has many Pentas that are still blooming. The clusters of flowers are starlike, and come in a variety of shades – from red, pink, white, and beyond. Their nectar-rich flowers attract butterflies and hummingbirds, and we often see them fluttering around the colorful mounds of blooms (especially the red variety).
Pentas are fast growing and easy to maintain. In order to keep Pentas lush with blooms, it is important to prune them regularly and remove spent flowers. They will also need full to partial sun and moist (not wet) soil. They can grow up to 20 inches tall, so they are not a tiny plant. I particularly like them in borders, along a pathway (as pictured here.) If your goal is to put them in containers, rather than in the ground, you might want to consider a compact and shorter Graffiti variety. Cut blooms can last up to two weeks in water, and they make for a simple and beautiful bouquet.
If you are looking for a colorful and easy-to-maintain plant, you just can’t beat the sensational Pentas. You will love them almost as much as the butterflies and hummingbirds do!