What are the Best Flowers to Grow in Illinois?
Finding the Best Flowers to Grow in Illinois was not as easy as I thought. Some require extensive care, others are prone to pests, and lots are just not simple & quick enough to grow.
That’s why I created a list of the 10 Best Flowers to Grow in Illinois!
This ultimate guide will give you the Best Flowers to Grow in Illinois, why you should grow them, and even how to grow them.
Read THIS Before Growing Flowers in Illinois
Knowing what hardiness zone Illinois is critical to understanding the best flowers that can be grown.
It can be the difference between your flower garden thriving and providing beautiful blooms or producing nothing.
Illinois is mostly considered Hardiness Zone 5, while some of the lower-level regions are Hardiness Zone 6.
10 Best Flowers to Grow in Illinois
Popular Varieties: Grandiflora, Multiflora, Milliflora, Wave
Why Grow Petunias in Illinoid?
Thrives in Heat:
- Petunias are a great annual flower that can bloom until early November but really thrives in heat. You’ll notice the hotter it is the more blooms there are!
- Flowers typically are not low maintenance. But wave petunias are one of the easiest flowers to grow. They require no deadheading for more blooms.
Perfect for ANY Garden:
- Some flowers require all sun or all shade to grow. Not Petunias. They can grow anywhere in your garden, in hanging baskets, window boxes, and anywhere else you can think of.
THESE Could Harm Your Petunias
- Like many other annual flowers, petunias can become a victim of garden pests like chipmunks and rabbits who eat the plants before flowers bloom.
Related: 20 Ways to Deter Rabbits from Your Garden
Related: 20 Ways to Prevent Chipmunks in Your Garden
- If the weather drops below 35 degrees Fahrenheit constantly then expect the flowers on your petunias to wilt and die. Soon after your flower plant itself will die.
Learn More Petunias HERE
Popular Varieties: English, African, Shasta
Why Grow Daisies in Illinois?
- Daisies are a great plant it and forgot about it flower. Plant bulbs in the fall and actual plants in the spring and watch this beautiful flower come back year after year with little to no maintenance.
- Not every plant on this list can tolerate heat and full-sun. Daisies though thrive the hotter it gets and more sunlight it receives, making this the perfect flower to plant anywhere in your yard.
- It seems like deer and rabbits will eat almost any flower or plant in your garden. Deter them from your flower garden with the pugant flavor of daisies..
THESE Could Harm Your Daisies
- Before Daisies bloom their plant look like weeds. Sometimes humans will accidentally mow them, cut them, or remove them before they have a chance to grow and bloom.
Diseases & Fungus
- Wet conditions and cold conditions usually mean more disease and fungus. While it does not happen often daisies plants come fall prone to fungus and disease and cause no blooms or death of the flower.
Learn More About Daisies HERE
Popular Varieties: Pinnata, Bishop, Imperialis
Why Grow Dahlias in Illinois?
- Dahlia is the easiest flower to grow. You do not need to fertilize it, barely need to water it, it can be planted in any soil, and you never have to worry about it!
Perfect in Containers:
- The best spot to plant dahlias is in gardening containers. This is because you can grow them anywhere, such as in your house, on your patio, and even transplant into a window box.
THESE Could Harm Your Dahlia
- Like several other flowers on this list, Dahlias are prone to garden pests. Unlike other flowers garden pests like squirrels, deer, and rabbits will eat bulbs, flowers, and even the plant itself.
Learn More Dahlias HERE
Popular Varieties: Common, Desert, Angustifolia
Why Grow Zinnia in Illinois?
Thrives in the heat:
- While you can plant your Zinnias in spring for a headstart, Zinnias is one of the few spring flowers that can be planted in early summer and still continuously bloom and grow.
Easy to Grow from Seed:
- Zinnias is the easiest and most popular type of flower to grow from seed. It requires less sunlight, water, and care to germinate compared to other flowers during the winter.
Perfect in All Types of Garden:
- Some flowers only do well in the ground. Not Zinnias. You can grow them in containers, window boxes, raised garden beds, and even in poor soil.
THESE Could Harm Your Zinnias
- Zinnias are beautiful flowers, but if the soil gets too wet fungus can cause root rot. Not only this, but it can affect the colors and how long blooms last.
Learn More About Zinnias HERE
Popular Varieties: Single, Double, Fringed, Triumph
Why Grow Tulips in Illinois?
- Out of all the flowers on this list it can be argued that the Tulip is the most beautiful flower that blooms in the spring. It comes in shades of white, black, purple, red, yellow, pink, orange, and so much more. It will add so much color no matter where you live.
Perfect for Any Yard:
- Some flowers only do well in certain soil and sunlight. Not Tulips. You can grow them in containers, window boxes, raised garden beds, and even in poor soil.
- Whether you are buying someone tulips to plant in their yard or you are cutting your own planted tulips to give someone, this flower is considered the ultimate gift for birthdays, mother’s day, and even Easter.
THESE Could Harm Your Tulips
Squirrels, Rabbits, & Chipmunks:
- Typically, garden pests will eat other flowers and plants before tulips. But in late fall when squirrels are trying to forage for winter or early spring when rabbits and chipmunks are hungry, tulips may be dug up for food.
- Tulips typically can survive cold and sometimes brutal winters. What may harm or even kill your tulips is late spring frosts and long spurts of very cold springs.
Learn More About Tulips HERE
Popular Varieties: French, Signet, African, Triploid
Why Grow Marigolds in Illinois?
Thrives in the heat & cold:
- If you have early spring frosts or late fall frost then Marigolds is the perfect flower to plant for an extended flower garden season.
- Marigolds are another flower that has continuous blooms for 6-8 months of the year. All you have to do is deadhead them.
- Attracting Pollinators are hard. But it doesn’t have to be. Just plant your Marigold flowers and watch bees, butterflies, and birds come to it.
Related: 50 USEFUL Plants that Attract Bees
THESE Could Harm Your Marigolds
- Marigolds are one of the more insect-resistant flowers. But its weakness is spider mites. Spider Mites are known to quickly destroy marigolds if not remedied early.
Related: 10 Best Insecticides for Flowers
- Drought is one of the biggest threats to growing marigolds. Marigold plants need a consistent amount of water to thrive and produce blooms. Without water, expect little to no blooms.
Learn More About Marigolds HERE
Popular Varieties: Trumpet, Large Cup, Small Cup, Double, Triandrus
Why Grow Daffodils in Illinois?
- These low-maintenance flowers require very little care. You don’t have to prune it or deadhead it to have more flowers bloom. Not only this, but it thrives in cold and hot!
- Daffodils are probably the hardiest flower on this list. They can survive long period of cold, heat, garden pests, and sometimes even disease and fungus. You plant them and they’ll keep coming up year after year.
THESE Could Harm Your Daffodils
- Daffodils can quickly be eaten in early spring by garden pests like deer and rabbits who are hungry. Typically this happen before any type of flowers grow.
- While cold and frost won’t hurt a daffodil, if it happens late in spring when flowers have bloom it will stunt, diminish color, and even kill the flower bloom itself.
Learn More About Daffodils HERE
Popular Varieties: Common, yellow, dwarf
Why Grow Lilies in Illinois?
Blooms All Summer:
- If you pick the right type of lily, it can bloom not only in spring but also throughout the summer. And if you like different types you can’t plant these flowers so different ones bloom at different times in the year. Best of all is that they are perennials!
Great for Small Spaces:
- Lilies is one of the only flowers on this list that grows perfectly vertical. This means it is perfect for small spaces, urban gardeners, or in between other plants as a cross-pollinator.
THESE Could Harm Your Lilies
- Deer love lilies, especially Daylilies. Make sure to plant this flower close to your house, in a raised garden bed, or in a fenced in area of your yard or garden.
- Most flowers, including Lilies tolerate rain, heat, cold, shade, and droughts. But too much rain can cause root rot and other diseases that will kill your Lilies.
Did you know that Lilies are the most popular summer-blooming flower in Illinois? And it is also one of the least expensive perennials flowers to grow.
#9. Black Eyed Susans
Popular Varieties: Black-Eyed Susan, Brown-Eyed Susan, Cutleaf Coneflower
Why Grow Black-Eyed Susans in Illinois?
Thrives in Droughts:
- Black Eyed Susan do extremely well in droughts and although flowers may not bloom as plentiful, they will still thrive.
Perfect for All Gardens
- Black-Eyed Susans are the perfect flower that can be planted anywhere in your yard, garden, and even inside your house for all year summer blooms. While they thrive in gardens they also do well in compacted soil or in mulched areas of your yard.
- If you want to attract butterflies, bees, and birds to your flowers and garden all summer long then grow black-eyed susans! This is the perfect flower to attract pollinators not only in the summer, but even early fall.
THESE Could Harm Your Black Eyed Susans
- There aren’t many items that can harm or kill your black-eyed susans. One of the few things that can harm your flower is weeds. Once weeds begin to take over your garden or yard they will overtake your flower, hindering it from growing and blooming.
Learn more about black-eyed susans and other spring flowers that attract pollinators HERE.
Popular Varieties: Purple, Yellow, Pale Purple
Why Grow Coneflowers in Illinois
Perfect for All Summer Gardens:
- Coneflower flowers are the perfect flower that can be planted anywhere in your yard, garden, and even inside your house.
- There are almost 24 variants of Coneflower flowers. They come in many sizes and bloom beautiful colors of pink, purple, white, yellow, etc. They are easy to grow and can be planted anywhere in the world making them a favorite of beginner flower gardeners.
THESE Could Harm Your Coneflowers
Garen pests won’t bother coneflowers, drought and rain won’t either, but insects will. Japanese beetles, potato whiteflies, aphids, and mites will not only harm but destroy your coneflowers.
Learn How to Grow Coneflowers HERE
Common Growing Factors of Illinois’s Best Flowers
As a reminder, the below factors are common for the Best Flowers to Grow in Illinois:
- Thrives in Heat & Drought
- Thrives in Cold
- Can Grow anywhere in your yard
- Hardy against Pests & Insects
- Requires Little Care & Water
- Attracts Pollinators
- Ground Covers
- Great for Small Garden Space
- Durable & Versatile