So you’ve finally decided to give gardening a go or have looked at your garden and thought that it needed some sprucing up! The good news is there are thousands of wonderful flowers, shrubs, and trees to choose from. The bad news is that there are thousands of wonderful flowers, shrubs, and trees to choose from!
Selecting the lucky few plants to display in your garden can be a little daunting. The gardening world has perennials, annuals, and biennials, each of which have different needs that you may want to take into account. For instance, if you’re a very busy individual, you may not have the time to replant your annuals every year, or want any high-maintenance plants in your garden!
Luckily this short list of unique flowers that start with the letter G might help to narrow things down a little. Each description should let you know at a glance if these plants are suited to your needs and will fit nicely into your outdoor aesthetic.
Gardenias are one of the most popular flowering shrubs! They are native to subtropical and tropical areas of Africa, Asia, and the Pacific Islands and have been cultivated in China for thousands of years. Gardenia jasminoides, or cape jasmine, is a favorite among gardeners for its wonderfully fragrant flowers and has many attractive cultivars.
These plants are known for being a little fussy and will require some extra maintenance. However, this shouldn’t be a deterrent as these magnificent plants are well worth the effort. Depending on the variety, these shrubs grow between 3 and 8 feet high and have dark green glossy foliage. Flowers can be single or double, between 2 and 4 inches wide, and have cream or white waxy petals.
#2 Gas Plant
These fascinating plants go by the common names gas plant, dittany, or burning bush. They were named so because their flowers and foliage give off a strong, citrusy vapor that can be set on fire! Gas plants are native to Eurasia and despite their flammable properties are hugely popular perennials that are often grown in cottage-style gardens alongside peonies, daylilies, and irises!
They grow to a maximum of 3 feet and have tall, upright flower spikes that are adorned with clusters of five-petaled, fragrant, white, or pink flowers. Their blooming season is late spring to early summer and they perform best in climates with cool nights. Take care when handling them as they secrete oil which may be irritating to the skin.
Gauras are a group of 20 or so species that belong to the genus Gaura, but more often than not the common name is referring to Gaura lindheimeri. These perennials have a long blooming season that starts in mid-spring-early summer depending on the climate. Since gauras are native to Louisiana, Texas, and Mexico, gardeners normally grow them as annuals in cooler areas.
These plants are well-suited to prairie, meadow, or cottage-style gardens and their pretty flowers come in shades of pink and white. Their starry blooms sit loosely on top of long stalks that sway in the breeze. Gauras, especially more compact cultivars, are also fantastic for adding life to container or patio gardens!
Gazanias, also called treasure flowers, are native to South Africa and belong to the daisy family Asteraceae. Their flowers close at night or when the weather is cloudy, and bloom in late spring to early summer. These perennials are often grown as annuals so their vivid, jewel-tone flowers can be enjoyed even in cooler climates.
They have composite flower heads and come in bright shades of white, pink, red, yellow, and orange, with golden yellow centers. Often these centers have a darker starburst pattern or ring of dark dots. Gazanias grow to a maximum of 1 foot high and look sensational in large groups planted along borders or containers!
Gentians, which belong to the genus Gentiana, are a large group of around 400 species of mostly annuals and perennials. They are found worldwide in alpine and temperate regions and have delicate yet showy flowers. Typically, gentian flowers are blue, hence the color “gentian blue”, however, they also come in white, mauve, purple, yellow, and red!
These plants are great for the more shady areas of the garden and love moisture, so are perfect along stream or pond borders. Flowers are trumpet, funnel, or bell-shaped. Gentians have many practical uses such as for the making of dyes, their medical properties, or even as a flavoring in liqueurs!
The common name geranium actually refers to members of the genus Pelargonium not Geranium, which are known as cranesbill. There are around 280 annuals, biennials, and perennials in the genus, but the most popular ornamental geranium is Pelargonium x hortorum. These are short-lived perennials that are often grown as annuals and are a top choice for summer bedding schemes!
There are several cultivars within this group, making these plants extremely versatile and well-suited for beds and borders, containers, and hanging baskets. Flowers may be single, semi-double, or double, and are grouped together in neat clusters on top of long stalks. Flower clusters are uniform in color and can be white, pink, red, purple, or orange.
#7 Gerbera Daisy
These flowers come in vivid shades of white, pink, red, yellow, and orange, and can also be bi-colored. They are the perfect choice for anything looking to bring bold color to the garden. Gerbera daisies are technically perennials, but most gardeners grow them as annuals. Native to South Africa, these plants prefer full sun conditions but will appreciate some light afternoon shade in areas that experience hot summers.
Their bright flowers are extremely long-lasting and bloom profusely from late spring through to fall. Flowers are daisy-like and can grow between 3 and 4 inches wide. Plant them along borders for a pop of color or grouped together in large containers for an attractive display!
Gladiolus are bulbous perennials that belong to the iris family. They are often referred to as sword lilies for their distinct, sword-like green leaves. The genus Gladiolus has over 300 species coming from Africa, Madagascar, and Eurasia. Gladiolus are winter hardy for USDA zones 7-10 so in cooler climates, their corms will need to be dug up and overwintered.
They have fragrant flowers that make excellent cut flowers for the home. Their funnel-shaped flowers grow along one side of a tall flower spike and come in a variety of attractive colors! Plant them along borders or in containers but take care to put them in a sheltered position as they grow as tall as 6 feet and may be damaged by the wind.
#9 Globe Amaranth
Globe amaranth plants are tropical annuals that are native to parts of Central America. Their flowers are cultivated worldwide for their charming little flowers that not only attract butterflies into the garden but are also popular for dried flower arrangements! Their flower heads are a dense, round cluster of flowers that resemble clovers.
They are typically magenta, but there are pink, white, and yellow cultivars. They grow between 1 and 3 feet high and bloom prolifically through summer and fall! Plant them in pollinator gardens, or meadow or cottage-style garden schemes.
#10 Globe Thistle
These interesting plants are perennial wildflowers that are native to Central and Eastern Europe and Asia. They reach a maximum height of 4 feet with a 2.5-foot spread. They are mid-summer to early fall bloomers and have showy flowers that are also great in dried floral arrangements!
Globe thistles are fast-growing and low-maintenance making them perfect for beginner gardeners! They grow easily in average soils and prefer full sun conditions. Their small, blue, spiky-looking pom-pom flowers are wonderful for adding texture to the border. These plants will also attract bees and butterflies into the garden so are fantastic choices for pollinator gardens.
#11 Goat’s Beard
Goat’s beard or Aruncus dioicus are perennial shrubs that are native to North America. They can grow as tall as 6 feet making them great for adding height to beds and borders. These plants typically bloom from April to May and have tall, feathery plumes of cream flowers. Flowers will bring bees and butterflies into the garden, and in their native range, are important hosts for the Dusky Azure butterfly.
These whimsical plants are highly tolerable for wet conditions, lending them to boggier areas or for pondside landscaping. They grow well in full sun to partial shade and also thrive in moist woodland areas!
#12 Golden Marguerite
Anthemis tinctoria, often called golden chamomile or golden marguerite is a herbaceous perennial found growing in parts of Europe and Western Asia. These flowers are low-maintenance and easy to grow in average soils. Blooms are showy and make excellent cut flowers.
Golden marguerites have a long blooming season from early summer to fall and will brighten up the garden with their vivid flowers that come in different shades of yellow! In milder climates these plants are evergreen and their green, fern-like foliage will add some winter interest. Grow them along perennial borders or in areas with low soil fertility where other plants would struggle.
Goldenrods are a group of roughly 120 species plus cultivars that belong to the genus Solidago. They are extremely easy-to-grow and are forgiving perennials that have attractive flowers but may naturalize easily in the garden so will need to be divided every few years.
From July to September, goldenrods give a stunning display of vibrant, small yellow flowers that grow in tight clusters on long stems. Certain species are nectar-rich and therefore attract an abundance of pollinators into the garden! Plant them in informal gardens under full sun conditions alongside fall asters and blue salvias for an eye-catching display!
#14 Gooseneck Loosestrife
Gooseneck loosestrife (Lysimachia clethroides) are charming perennials that come from China and Japan. They are extremely popular as cut flowers and are grown commercially! Plant them in moist, rich soils under full sun, but be mindful as they tend to spread easily and take over the garden. To prevent this, it is recommended to plant them surrounded by a hardscape.
From June to July they produce showy racemes that are tightly packed with tiny white flowers. The flower spikes are tapered and arch gracefully, supposedly resembling a goose’s neck. Gooseneck loosestrife looks particularly striking when planted in large drifts and will do well in moist areas such as along streams and ponds.
#15 Grape Hyacinth
Grape hyacinths belong to the genus Muscari which contains around 50 species. They are small bulbous perennials that are popular spring garden ornamentals. Their genus name translates from Greek to mean musk in reference to the scent many members of this species possesses. They will grow as large as 1 foot and prefer moist soils in full to partial shade.
Their common name stems from their dense clusters of rounded bell-shaped blue-violet flowers that look like an upside-down bunch of grapes! However, white, yellow, and pink species and cultivars also exist. Grape hyacinths are great for growing in rock gardens and will also do well in containers making them excellent specimens for patios or balconies.
#16 Greater Periwinkle
The greater periwinkle is a fantastic perennial flower that also goes by the names big leaf periwinkle, blue periwinkle, and blue buttons. These low-growing flowers reach between 0.5 and 1.5 feet, making them a good choice for adding some ground cover! In their native range of Asia Minor, they are evergreen and begin flowering in April to May and then intermittently until fall.
They have showy, solitary violet-blue flowers that are tubular and grow on upright stalks. Greater periwinkles will grow well in beds and borders as well as in containers. They look lovely planted along walkways, in rock walls, or shade gardens, but are considered invasive in several US states.