Lantana is a popular flowering plant that is commonly found in Texas gardens. It is known for its bright, colorful blooms that attract bees, butterflies, and hummingbirds. Lantana is easy to grow and requires minimal maintenance, making it a great choice for both novice and experienced gardeners. In this article, we will discuss everything you need to know about planting lantana in Texas.
Choosing the Right Variety
There are many different varieties of lantana available, each with its own unique characteristics. When choosing a variety to plant in your Texas garden, consider factors such as the plant’s size, color, and bloom time. Some popular lantana varieties include:
- ‘New Gold’ – a compact plant with bright yellow flowers
- ‘Dallas Red’ – a larger plant with deep red flowers
- ‘Samantha’ – a trailing plant with pink and yellow flowers
Preparing the Soil
Lantana prefers well-draining soil that is rich in organic matter. Before planting, prepare the soil by amending it with compost or other organic materials. If your soil is heavy and clay-like, consider mixing in sand to improve drainage. Lantana also prefers a slightly acidic soil pH, so you may need to adjust the pH if your soil is too alkaline.
Plant lantana in a sunny location that receives at least six hours of direct sunlight per day. Dig a hole that is slightly larger than the plant’s root ball and amend the soil with organic matter. Place the plant in the hole and backfill with soil, gently tamping down to remove any air pockets. Water the plant thoroughly after planting.
Watering and Fertilizing
Water lantana deeply once a week, or more often during hot, dry weather. Avoid overwatering, as lantana prefers slightly dry soil. Fertilize the plant every six to eight weeks with a balanced fertilizer. Avoid using high-nitrogen fertilizers, as these can encourage leaf growth at the expense of flowers.
Pruning and Maintenance
Prune lantana in late winter or early spring to remove any dead or damaged wood and encourage new growth. You can also prune the plant throughout the growing season to control its size and shape. Lantana is relatively disease and pest-resistant, but you should keep an eye out for common garden pests such as aphids and spider mites.
Planting lantana in Texas is a great way to add color and interest to your garden. With its bright, beautiful blooms and easy-to-grow nature, lantana is a favorite among gardeners throughout the state. By choosing the right variety, preparing the soil, and providing proper care, you can enjoy the beauty of lantana in your Texas garden for years to come.