No matter if they’re out in your front garden, in a bouquet you give a friend or family member, or simply along a garden path, colorful flowers can bring joy in a huge amount of ways. They’re also some of the most colorful plants on earth. If you’re looking to add colorful flowers to your yard or garden or want to put together a bouquet, check out our list of the 49 most beautiful colorful flowers below.
1. Balloon Flower (Platycodon grandiflorus)
The Balloon Flower gets the common name because the buds of the flowers look like inflated balloons before they pop open to show the star-shaped, upward-facing flowers. The very showy blooms can be anywhere from two to three inches across, and they pop up throughout the summer months. You want to grow these plants in well-draining, loose soil because they’ll rot if the soil is too wet or retains too much water.
2. Bird of Paradise (Strelitzia)
This is a South African native plant, and you can see it on the reverse of the 50 cent coin in this country. Bird of Paradise is also the floral symbol of Los Angeles in the southwest portion of the United States. This plant is widely considered to be one of the most beautiful plants in the world due to the very colorful flowers in shades of yellow-orange on the sepals with purple and blue petals.
3. Blanket Flower (Gaillardia x Grandiflora)
This colorful flower varies in form and height, but all Blanket Flowers come in brilliant shades of orange, yellow, or red with daisy-like flowers in June to September. This is a sun-loving perennial that attracts butterflies, and they also tolerate rabbits niblings on them with dry soil conditions. However, you have to make sure the plant has excellent drainage as it won’t survive growing in wet, heavy soil where the water pools.
4. Blue Lotus Lily (Nymphaea caerulea)
This lily variety is actually a water lily, and it was originally found growing along the Nile and throughout east Africa. However, it’s now spread to grow in other parts of the world, including the Indian Subcontinent and Thailand. The colorful flower has a yellow center that is surrounded by petals in varying shades of blue from mauve to light blue. Like a lot of lotus flowers, this one has an important symbolic meaning in many cultures, and it’s popular in drink recipes.
5. Blue Tango (Aechmea)
The Blue Tango colorful flower falls into the Bromeliad plant family. This family is known for having bright, brilliant flowers. It’s a newer hybrid addition to this genus, and it produces bright pink and blue flowers that are luminescent. It gives you a very eye-catching look when you see it, and it’s quickly becoming a favorite to put in landscaping plans. You can also grow it indoors, and putting it in a space that gets indirect but bright light gives you the best chance of having it thrive.
6. Camellia (Camellia)
Camellia falls into the Thecae family, and it’s native to East and Southern Asia, as well as the Himalayas. It has very soft, delicate petals with gentle curves that makes it a very pretty flower to look at. These colorful flowers come in red, pink, or white, and it’s considered to be a symbol of passion, desire, and refinement. It also signifies perfection in some cultures. Camellia’s red flowers mean “you are the love of my life” while the pink means longing and the white means adoration.
7. Canna Lily (Canna × generalis)
Canna is a very small genus of subtropical and tropical plants that have colorful flowers. They bloom throughout the summer months with flower spikes that sit way on top of the foliage to add height to your garden. You want to remove the spikes once the flowers die back to keep them looking neat. Also, make sure your plant gets a consistent level of moisture without waterlogging the soil as they don’t like wet feet.
8. Carnation (Dianthus caryophyllus)
Did you know that the carnation was a colorful flower that means death and mourning? They’re a very popular choice for sympathy arrangements too. The word “carnation” comes from the work “corone” or coronation, and this makes sense as it was originally used during Greek crowning ceremonies. You can find this flower in a huge range of colors, and the standard ones are purplish pink, and each color has a unique meaning. Pink carnations stand for remembrance while red ones evoke love and admiration. Finally, white carnations represent innocence, good luck, and pure love.
9. Chrysanthemum (Chrysanthemum)
This flower means friendship and loyalty, and there are roughly 30 different types of chrysanthemums available that you can find in shades of pink, yellow, white, or red. This is a very popular colorful flower that you find available around Christmas time, especially the deep red ones. It offers larger petals with pretty foliage all packed into a compact flower that is an excellent potted plant.
10. Clematis (Clematis ‘Jackmanii’)
The Clematis plant has showy, bright, and colorful flowers. Jackmanii is one cultivar that has particularly bright flowers that can get between five and seven inches across in a vivid violet coloring. It has a pretty vining growth habit, so you will need to give it a support structure, like a trellis. You also want to put a layer of mulch over the roots to help shield them from the sun and keep them cool.
11. Coleus (Plectranthus scutellarioides)
Coleus plants offer a kaleidoscope’s worth of colors for your yard or garden, including Wizard Sunset that has stunning apricot foliage. These plants don’t necessarily produce colorful flowers, and you grow them for the foliage. This is a tropical plant that can produce white or blue flowers during the summer months. Pinch back the stems to get a bushier growth habit, and make sure they’re in a partially shaded location so the sun doesn’t wilt the foliage.
12. Coneflower (Echinacea spp.)
Gone are the days of the washed-out looking plants from this family that attracted droves of butterflies but were often overlooked. A renewed focus on breeding has given way to colorful flowers in shades of magenta, coral, and more to attract pollinators and wow people. Coneflowers will tolerate some drought conditions, but the new varieties prefer to be in loamy soil with consistent moisture.
13. Coral Bells (Heuchera spp.)
Coral bells are plants that you grow for the foliage instead of colorful flowers, and they form rounded, low mounts. They do send up bell-shaped flowers during the summer months and very tall stems that sit above the foliage. While the blooms are very delicate, they add a huge amount of visual impact to the garden with their purple hue, especially when you group them. You want to divide mature clumps every few years so they retain their strong growth habit.
14. Daffodil (Narcissus spp.)
When the Daffodils start to pop up, gardeners know that spring has arrived. These bulb plants produce cup or trumpet-shaped colorful flowers in a range of bright colors, and some cultivars are fragrant. You should plant your bulbs two or three inches deep and you should be able to leave them in the ground for years to enjoy the bright blooms in the early spring months.
15. Dahlia (Dahlia hortensis)
The Dahlia is arguably one of the most vibrant and lushest flowers you can get in your garden, and they’re available in a huge color range from white or orange to pink and red. Some Dahlia petals can come with pretty color gradients too, like bright red that fades to a soft white or purples that lighten up from the center to the tip.
16. Daylily (Hemerocallis spp.)
Daylily plants are very durable, as proven by their growth habit alongside roads. This pretty cottage garden plant has several vailabel cultivars on the market, including Chicago Royal Robe that are no more challenging to grow than the orange or yellow cultivars. This colorful flower likes to grow in farmsteads and fields. You should make a point to deadhead the flowers to promote more colorful flower production.
17. Dianthus (Dianthus spp.)
Dianthus has colorful flowers that usually come in pink shades, but there are other varieties available too. These interesting flowers have petals that have jagged edges, and Dianthus starts flowering in late spring to early summer to continue on through the late summer months. Deadhead any dying flowers to promote new growth and a longer bloom time.
18. Fuchsia (Fuchsia spp.)
Every spring, you can see lush hanging baskets in garden centers that are spilling over with fuschia plants. It’s challenging to resist the bright purple, pink, or red flowers in this genus, but many of these plants end up in the compost heap after a few months. You can keep your Fuchsia plants blooming by putting them in a partially shaded location that is sheltered from the wind. They also require regular irrigation with a rich soil.
19. Gazania (Gazania rigens)
Gazania is a popular xeriscaping plant with colorful flowers that is native to southern Africa. You get pretty daisy-shaped flowers in bright shades or orange, yellow, and maroon. You can find them in several different soil types from sandy, low-altitude ground to alpine meadows. They usually get cultivated for their pretty colors and almost symmetrical petals, and they’re very popular for private gardens.
20. Gladiolus (Gladiolus spp)
Gladioli are very tall plants that produce multiple colorful flowers in a star-shape. They can get up to four feet tall at full maturity. You find them growing in Europe, South Africa, and the Mediterranean areas of Europe. You can find this flower available in a huge range of colors, including purple, pink, white, green, orange, and salmon.
21. Great Masterwort (Astrantia major)
You’ll find this colorful flower growing wild in grasslands, mountain meadows, adn forested regions throughout eastern and central Europe. The plants can get up to two feet tall at full maturity, and flowers come in shades of white and pink. The flowers have very intricately detailed petals that make them a favorite with home gardeners in small and large gardens.
22. Hawaiian Hibiscus (Hibiscus rosa-sinensis)
This bright, bold, red colorful flower is one of the most recognizable Hawaiian flowers on the market, even though it originally comes from Asia. Hibiscus plants are a very popular ornamental choice too, and it comes in a huge range of tropical colors. The flowers are edible, and they make great additions to salads or as a garnish in desserts.
23. Iris (Iris)
When you see the Iris flower, you may think that a skilled artist meticulously designed it. This is why it was a favorite subject for impressionist painter Claude Monet, and it shows up in several of his works. Splashes of purple blue, white, and yellow make the Iris a very popular bouquet flower.
24. Lantana (Lantana camara)
If you’re trying to make a pollinator garden with colorful flowers, the lantana plant should be on the list. It produces pretty little flower clusters that come in several hues, and you can get multiple colors on the same plant. Lantana plants are very easy to grow, and they are invasive in some areas. Look for cultivars like New Gold that don’t produce berries and spread out of control.
25. Lavender (Lavandula angustifolia)
Lavender is very familiar for both the pretty spikes of colorful flowers in purple shades and the fragrance. It starts to bloom throughout the summer months, and it’s common to harvest and dry the flower sachets and potpourri. You do want to make sure the soil has good drainage because it’s common to rot in soggy conditions.
26. Lisianthus (Eustoma)
Lisianthus is a colorful flower that is native to Mexico and Texas, and it symbolizes having a more outgoing nature. The flowers have ruffled, wide, and delicate petals with oval leaves, and it has a very close resemblance to poppies and tulips. They can also look like peonies or tulips in their double form. These flowers are very important for communicating romantic desire, congeniality, and charisma. They come in pink, white, purple, and lavender coloring.
27. Lobster Claw (Heliconia)
The hanging cascade of colorful flower Lobster Claw produces what looks like lobster claws, and this is where the name comes from. You can find it growing in rainforests in South or Central America. It tends to flower during the wet season to display a huge amount of orange, red, green, and yellow colors. It works well in hanging baskets, and the vibrant flowers are key to attracting the main pollinators of this plant, hummingbirds. Also, hummingbirds can use the host plant to nest in.
28. Lotus (Nymphaea nouchali)
The lotus plant is a colorful flower that doesn’t seem real. It has outward-reaching petals that radiate with stunning white and pink hues, and it has a golden steam in the center to give the flowers a nice focal point to pull the whole look together. The petals are almost 100% symmetrical when it comes to the size, and the highlighted tips add character and dimension to the overall look.
29. Magnolia (Magnolia)
Magnolia flowers are slightly different from other flowers as they don’t have petals. Instead, this plant has tepals in their place, and these are lead-like structures. These colorful flowers come in a huge shade range, and each color means something different. The white ones mean perfection and purity, pink ones mean luck and youth, and the purple ones mean best wishes for luck and health. Magnolias are also associated with your life force, and they’re popular to send when there is a new birth.
30. Marigold (Tagetes spp.)
A bright orange and red marigold flower set along a lush green garden can be one of the prettiest sights in your garden. This colorful flower’s golden hue gets more bold and vibrant the closer you get to it. The petals have unique ridges along the edges, and you get subtle but rich variations in colors. The different shapes also lend texture and visual interest to your yard.
31. Mexican Sunflower (Tithonia rotundifolia)
Mexican sunflowers produce colorful flowers in vivid colors and with a showy look. The flowers are roughly three inches across, and they start to flower in the middle of summer and go well into fall. They make a fantastic cut flower, and they’re very tolerant of poor soil. This flower that starts with M will actually produce weak stems with excess foliage if you put them in rich soil. You may need to stake tall plants to prevent them from flopping over.
32. Moss Rose (Portulaca grandiflora)
Moss roses don’t ask for a lot when it comes to your garden and car besides as much sun as you can give them. As a shrub rose, these blooms tend to close when the clouds or nighttime reduces the sun. Gardens who live in more harsh environments or have sidewalk edges or curbsides running in their yard, should pick out this colorful flower. It can survive the drought and heat asphalt and concrete generate.
33. Opium Poppy ‘Danebrog’ (Papaver somniferum)
The opium poppy is famous for being and eye-catching, famous colorful flower, and it provides opium seeds that get used in a range of medicines, including morphine. Danebrog is one of the prettiest cultivars that has red petals with a cross-like, white shape running across the center near the stamen. It gets the name from Denmark’s national flag as it has a similar pattern and shares the Danebrog name.
34. Oriental Poppy (Papaver orientale)
Poppies work as a practical ground cover plant, and it can pack a huge amount of pigmentation in the tissue-thin petals. This colorful flower comes in a huge range of shades, including bold reds with rich plum purple. They have a very long tap root that allows them to survive drought very easily, but it also makes it difficult to transplant them, so you don’t want to disturb the roots if you can help it.
35. Peony (Paeonia officinalis)
Peonies are very long-lived plants that are deer and rabbit-resistant, but they attract a lot of pollinators. The lightly fragrant, showy, colorful flowers are cup-shaped, and they bloom late in the spring months. The flowers are roughly five inches wide, and you want to cut the plants back to the ground in the fall after the first frost. They go dormant in the winter before regrowing in the spring.
36. Persian Buttercup (Ranunculus asiaticus)
This colorful flower that starts with P features glowing oranges, reds, and yellows. They rival English roses when it comes to the petal count, and they can brighten up the garden. This is a late-spring bloomer that is hardy to zone eight, and you can grow them as annuals outside of these zones. They also do well in containers, but you need soil with good drainage to keep these plants healthy as they’re prone to root rot.
37. Protea (Protea)
Protea is a very unique looking colorful flower that is one of the oldest flowers in history that dates back 300 million years. The unique appearance of this tropical flower comes from the thicker stalks and strong, stunning flowers. This flower symbolizes diversity, strength, courage, and transformation.
38. Queen Anne’s Lace (Daucus carota)
The delicate and beautiful colorful flower gets the name from the Queen of England, Queen Anne. Queen Anne was challenged by some friends to create lace that was more beautiful than this flower, but she pricked her hand while attempting to do so. The purple and red center on this flower represents the drop of blood she shed after she pricked her hand. It symbolizes comfort and grace.
39. Ranunculus (Ranunculus)
Ranunculus is a very colorful flower that has a long history of medicinal use. It’s available in pink, yellow, white, and red. This flower goes by the name of the Buttercup commonly, and it’s a pretty flower that has both inner and outer beauty. The meaning of this flower is “I am amazed by your charm” so it’s fitting that it’s a stunning plant. You can use it as a nice rose alternative too.
40. Snapdragons (Antirrhinum)
This colorful flower is native to Italy and Spain, and the name snapdragons comes from the quiet snap sound it produces when you gently close the sides of the flower’s mouth. It represents both fascinating and deception, and you’ll get tall flower spikes in a huge range of colors with lush green foliage when you plant them.
41. Strawflower (Xerochrysum bracteatum)
Strawflowers have papery but colorful flowers that repel rabbits, and many people think they’re fake at first glance. Also called paper daisies, these blooms will last for a long time as dried specimens or cut flowers in potpourri or arrangements. These plants will usually grow without any problems, but the taller cultivars may need to be staked to prevent them from falling over.
42. Sunflower (Helianthus annuus)
Sunflowers manage to capture how bright sunlight is in their petals. The blooms are between three and six inches across, but some varieties produce massive flowers. They open in the summertime and drop the seeds in the late summer for the next season. You want to plant sunflowers in a space that has wind protection and stake taller cultivars to keep them upright.
43. Tiger Flower (Tigridia pavonia)
Tiger flowers are very brilliantly patterned or brightly colored, and they’re a Mexico native. Each flower will only live for a single day, but it’s common to have several flowers on a single stalk. It will bloom early in the morning and close at night, and they have tiger-like markings on the petals. This is a tender perennial bulb flower, like Scilla.
44. Tulip (Tulipa spp.)
When you think about colorful flowers, especially in the early spring, tulips should come to mind. They come in a range of vivid hues, and they look impressive in groups of 25 or bigger. Be sure that you plant each bulb a minimum of six inches under the surface of the soil to increase the chances of them coming back the following spring.
45. Toothed Calicoflower (Downingia cuspidata)
This is a very distinct wildflower that you can find in the United States in the northwest. It produces blue flowers with three conjoined petals in the lower part with a bright yellow spot by the middle. This is used to attract pollinators to help guide them to the center of the flower. It also has two upper petals that stick up like rabbit ears, so you get both a unique multi-color appearance with an interesting shape.
46. True Passionflower (Passiflora incarnata)
Passiflora or true passionflower is a popular butterfly garden plant due to the vibrant and intricate look. It grows on a climbing vine too. You commonly find it growing in the southern states in the United States, usually right around Tennessee as it’s the state flower. They usually come with white and blue petals with a protruding, prominent stamen. This plant thrives in areas where there is a lot of sunlight as it allows them to bloom in mid-summer.
47. Virginia Bluebell (Mertensia virginica)
Virginia bluebells are wildflowers that form clump shapes as they grow, and they usually grow in woodlands or floodplains. During the spring, they produce clusters of bell-shaped or trumpet-shaped blooms that are roughly an inch long. The flowers start a pink hue before they turn the trademark blue. This plant doesn’t need a lot of maintenance besides getting a little shade as it grows.
48. Wine Cups (Geissorhiza radians)
Wine cup is one of the prettiest and most unique flowers you can have in your garden. It’s a wild plant that you’ll find growing in South Africa, and the flowers are smaller at one-inch across when it’s fully grown. What this plant lacks in size it makes up for in the radiant colors with deep purple and ruby red. Pollinators like hummingbirds and bees love this plant.
49. Zinnia (Zinnia elegans)
Zinnias give you color early in the summer from June until the first frost of the fall. They come in a huge range of bright colors, and you can get dozens of zinnia cultivars, including new mildew-resistant ones. This is helpful because this plant is prone to having issues with fungal diseases. Plant them in a space with good air circulation to prevent diseases.
These 49 colorful flowers can make fantastic additions to your garden or flower beds. They’re versatile, most of them are very low-maintenance, and you can use them to get welcome pops of color, texture, and structure all year from spring until late in the fall months.
Jen is a master gardener, interior designer and home improvement expert. She has completed many home improvement, decor and remodeling projects with her family over the past 10 years on their 4,500 sf Victorian house. She is also a passionate farmer who keeps goats, chickens, turkeys cows and pigs on her farm, and an instructor for her community’s Organic and Sustainable Farming project.