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Yarrow. Not only does yarrow tolerate heat and drought like a champion, but this easy-growing perennial is also a great cut flower -- and deer, rabbits, and most other pests won't touch it. It comes in a number of varieties with blooms in shades of yellow, orange, red, pink, and white.
Bush Sage Salvia is an all-around great plant. It's very tough, grows well in a range of conditions, produces beautiful flowers, and attracts hummingbirds. What's not to love? 'Raspberry Delight' offers gorgeous raspberry-red flowers over a long season: From late spring to early fall. Name: Salvia 'Raspberry Delight' Conditions: Full sun and well-drained soil Size: To 3 feet tall Zones: 6-10
Amsonia A tough, but sadly underused perennial, amsonia produces clusters of sky-blue flowers in late spring. It's not just a one-season wonder, though. In autumn, its foliage turns brilliant shades of gold -- enough to rival many of the trees when they put on their fall finery. Name: Amsonia tabernaemontana Conditions: Full sun and well-drained soil Size: To 2 feet tall I want some of this for the front yard!
Blanket Flower A tough prairie plant, gaillardia blooms all summer and into fall. Its flamboyant flowers are usually marked with bright shades of red and yellow. Name: Gaillardia 'Kobold' Conditions: Full sun and well-drained soil Size: To 3 feet tall Zones: 3-8