Lantanas: Hardy and They Attract Butterflies
Lantanas are an excellent low-maintenance plant, and they do well in the Kansas climate. An extra bonus are the butterflies and hummingbirds that enjoy the colorful flowers that bloom all season long.
Produced by the Department of Communications at Kansas State University. For more information, visit our website at: http://www.kansasgreenyards.org
Lantanas - Hardy and They Attract Butterflies
These are lantanas. They are probably our most heat tolerant, wind resistant, most ideal growth habit plants for our Kansas summers all across the state. They just thrive in our climate. In fact, the drier and hotter it is, the faster they grow.
They have wonderful colors. Here we have the pink and yellow, and the orange and yellow here behind me. We have some golds and some reds and some lemonades, and there’s a grape color. There’s a whole spectrum of colors, but the two-tone flowers gives it a confetti appearance, because they’re small individual flowers in a larger cluster.
And the other nice thing, besides growing well in the heat and drought, is that butterflies just love these. So you have this confetti flower, and then we have the colorful butterflies and moths land on them to pollinate and feed on the nectar from the flowers. And as they move and flitter around we have a symphony of color, and kinetic motion from the butterflies. It’s just wonderful.
Just give them some space. There’s two basic types. One has a more formal growth habit which is typical of the bandana series. It grows a round mound as if you pinched it – but it does that naturally. And then there’s the more open and informal forms. And some of those will get fairly large – three feet tall and three feet across. In the south, they’re a perennial, but it gets cold here, and they freeze out. But they are a fairly large, fast growing, and high flowering annual flower for Kansas.
This feature story prepared with Alan Stevens, retired Kansas State University Research and Extension State Leader, Horticulture. For more information, visit your local county extension office or visit our website at KansasGreenYards.org.