Though it has the word weed in its common name, don't let that scare you away from butterfly weed (Asclepias tuberosa). Sometimes called milkweed, it's as easy to grow as a weed but much prettier, plus hummingbirds and butterflies (especially monarchs) adore it. Clusters of orange, yellow, pink or vermillion flowers appear in mid- to late summer, followed by thin, ornamental seedpods.
If your track record is truly horrible when it comes to keeping plants alive, stick to succulents. This guide will show you how to plant one.