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The Easiest Flowers to Grow (and they’re cheap too!)

If you need some ideas for the easiest flowers to grow, look no further! There are so many varieties that you can find at any garden center for very little money that won’t take a lot of gardening skill or effort. I love plants and flowers, but I also have a budget. And these affordable options fit the budget bill! Check out these ideas for my favorite flowers to grow!

Some of the easiest flowers to grow are widely available. These include flowers like Zinnias, Portulacas, Impatiens, and Marigolds.

Every year I say the same thing when going to the garden center. “I will not buy more than I have room or time for”. And every year, my cart ends up looking like a crazy plant hoarder. See below:

A large assortment of flowers, including pink flowers and succulents in a shopping cart at a store.

I’ve always loved flowers. I remember as a kid going to the store with my mom and I’d go to the faux flower section and start rearranging them all and making them look neater! And my Grandma always had plenty of flowers blooming throughout her yard. So many varieties and colors – and I loved them all.

But – back to reality where I’m a busy mom with a job and a house and life and all the other craziness that comes every day. And unfortunately – a budget. So I need some cheap options that will give me my plant fix each year! Plus why not make it simpler with some of the easiest flowers to grow!

The Easiest Flowers to Grow


Purple and red zinnias with brown and yellow centers grow in an outdoor garden.

Zinnias top my list for all sorts of reasons. They love the sun and can tolerate drought. They’re some of the easiest flowers to grow either from seed or you can buy the plants at any garden center. And, they bloom like crazy. 

You can cut the blooms and bring them inside for little decorations too. Hummingbirds and bees love these flowers as well. They’re considered annuals, meaning they don’t return year after year. However, they reseed and can return every year.

Close-up of yellow zinnias growing in a flower bed with wood chips.

One year I picked up a packet of seeds from the garden center and literally just threw them onto the ground. Guess what? They grew and thrived. I’m not kidding when I say they are some of the easiest and prettiest flowers to grow.

If you want to do it correctly, you just push them about 1/4 inch into the soil and you’ll see plants in no time. I picked up a new variety this year – the Giant Golden Yellow and added two for a bright pop of color in the back yard.

Every year, these are some of my favorites in the yard. They’re bright and showy and the continuous blooms give color all summer.

Zinnias are not only some of the easiest flowers to grow, but they’re very inexpensive.  You can get a packet of seeds or a few plants already grown for just a few bucks.

And since the birds love these plants, you’ll likely find a few more Zinnias in other places in your yard in a few months! If you’re frequented by snacking deer, they’ll likely leave your Zinnias alone also!

Check out the best planting zones for Zinnias before you plant.


Purple and white petunias with green stems and leaves grow outside in a flower bed.

Close-up of red and white petunias with green petals in a garden bed outside.

Petunias make great container plants for hanging baskets. They have large colorful blooms and they’ll trail over the sides of your containers.

You can find Petunias in a huge variety of colors from white, pink, red, purple, lavender, yellow, and some that even look black! They also come in mixed shades with some having two colors in each flower.

Dark pink and white petunias and yellow zinnias grow in an outdoor flower bed with wood chips.

You can add these to flower boxes, containers, baskets, or just pop them in the ground as I did. Keep them watered in well-drained soil and feed them with a fertilizer formulated for flowering plants like this one every 3 weeks or so.

Give them full sun for more blooms, but they can also tolerate some shade. I found one this year that I haven’t planted before in a striking shade of magenta with a white border and popped it in the ground in between my Giant Yellow Zinnias and it makes a fabulous contrast of color.

Grab a variety of colors of Petunias and plant them 12-24 inches apart in your garden areas. Or add rows of one color for a spectacular pop of color all summer. You’ll see blooms until the fall likely. And Petunias are also a super affordable plant from any garden center. 


Close-up of pale pink impatiens growing outside in a flower bed.

Impatiens look similar to Petunias and they also come in a variety of showy colors including white, pink, purple, orange, and purple. You can pick up several of these for very little money and they do great in the ground or in containers.

Most varieties prefer a bit of shade, but they do have some sun-loving types referred to as SunPatiens.

Pink impatiens grow in a chest outside on a porch.

I’ve planted them in both shade and sun and they’ve done fine either way. These are perfect for ground planting in beds or in containers. Every year I add a few to an old toolbox I use as a planter on my front porch.

It gets bright afternoon sun from around 3 pm till sundown, and as long as I keep them watered, they thrive.

Vintage toolbox used for a planter with pink flowers on a front porch during summer.

Impatiens also grow quickly which is good for impatient lazy gardeners like me! These are seriously some of the easiest and most affordable flowers you can plant. I just planted those above in the toolbox less than 3 weeks ago.  Here’s what they looked like right after planting:

Look at that difference in less than three weeks!  They’ll be spilling over the edge of the toolbox soon. And they require little maintenance. Fertilize them when you feed your other plants and keep them watered in well-drained soil and they’ll thrive.

They’re annuals so you’ll need to replant each year, but you’ll see gorgeous blooms all summer.


Pink, yellow, and white portulaca flowers grow in an outdoor flower bed.

I know I keep repeating that each are my faves, but I can’t leave out Portulaca when listing some of the easiest flowers to grow. They come in a wide variety of colors like purple, yellow, orange, pink, and white and they have interesting delicate-looking flowers. The stems remind me of rosemary plants. 

Portulaca plants grow in a container on a planter shelf outside in full sun.

I usually buy a pack of at least six and spread them out about 4-6 inches in the containers. Keep them watered in well-drained soil and you’ll see bright colorful blooms all summer. They’re annuals, so you’ll need to replant them each year.

An image collage of portulaca plants growing in various containers outside.

Another cheap favorite, Portulaca is easy to grow in containers or hanging baskets. I’ve actually never planted these in the ground, but I’m sure you could do that as well. I have a few DIY Planters that I use every year for Portulaca.

This year I added a new DIY planter using an old rusty colander from a vintage store. I wondered how the holes would hold up to the watering, but so far so good!


A large flower bed filled with bright orange marigolds with green stems and leaves.

Close-up of bright yellow marigold plants with green stems and leaves growing outside.

Marigolds are annuals that come in shades of orange, yellow, and reddish orange. They grow well in sunny areas with well-drained soil. You can pinch off the old flowers (called deadheading) and make room for new blooms. You can do this all summer for new blooms.

Add them to containers or borders for beds and you’ll have a bright punch of color all summer. Another inexpensive and easy flower to grow, Marigolds look great in groupings whether you choose all one color or pick a mix of colors.

The colors are limited in these, but they’re bold and showy.


White and yellow calibrachoa plants grow outside in a blue container.

Calibrachoa is the perfect, low maintenance plant for hanging baskets and containers. They come in a wide variety of colors from pink, purple, yellow, white, and mixed colors.  And these are easy to grow!

You can find them at most garden centers in small pots – add them to containers or baskets and in no time you’ll have trailing flowers that bloom continuously.

Full sun container plant calibrachoa

They don’t get tall – only about 4 inches or so, but they trail and bloom like crazy. You don’t have to pinch off the dead flowers either – they grow so fast and the old blooms just fall off.

They’re considered annuals, but I live in the South and I planted the one above last year and to my surprise, it came right back this year.

Collage of pink and yellow calibrachoa flowers growing in containers outside.

Calibrachoa loves the sun and as long as you keep it watered, it’ll thrive. Feed it if the leaves start to look yellow and that’s about it for maintenance on this easy to grow flower. 

Sweet Alyssum
Small white and green sweet alyssum flowers grow outside in a flower bed.

Sweet alyssum flowers grow outside in a hanging metal planter.

These are new to me this year. I wanted a white flower to go in some little hanging pots on my Planter Shelf.  I usually add asparagus ferns to those but wanted color instead of just greenery this year.

But this year I found White Knight Sweet Alyssum at a local garden center and so far, they’re doing great. They have continuous white blooms of tiny flowers and as long as I keep them watered, they seem to be thriving.

Sweet alyssum flowers grow outside on a planter shelf in a metal container.

Sweet Alyssum is a short trailing plant that grows about 4-6″ high. They prefer full sun (mine get morning sun for at least 4 hours, but they’d probably like a little more.

Water regularly and fertilize when you do all your other plants. I’ll keep you posted on how mine does since this is my first year growing these pretty plants.


A metal container filled with succulents that are growing outside in full sun.
Close-up of leafy green succulents growing outside in a flower bed.

Succulents won’t give you the bright showy blooms that the other flowers will, but they are some of the easiest plants to grow. They thrive in drought conditions and can tolerate the heat. Succulents love the sun too.

We planted some from a tiny sprig in a cup that a friend gave us. One of the stems broke and I tossed it onto the ground. Now, this is what we have year after year:

Leafy green succulents grow outside in a teal planter next to a flower bed.

It’s a huge cluster of stems that returns every year and it’s planted right in front of where my Zinnias come up. The dark green looks so pretty against the showy blooms of the Zinnias. And to show you how easy this is – I do nothing with it.

I don’t trim it, feed it, and it only gets watered when it rains. Can’t get easier than that! I have another one in a pot that I painted bright blue and it also returns every year.


Close-up of dianthus flowers with pale pink and hot pink petals grow outside.

Dianthus are perennial flowers that are pretty much self-sufficient as long as they get watered. I found a few at Walmart one year and popped them into the ground and I get continuous, deer-resistant blooms all summer.

They have delicate flowers in pink, purple, white, red, lavender, and even bi-colored varieties like those above.

Image collage showing two pictures of purple and pink dianthus flowers growing outside.

And for around $5 at any garden center you can pick some up and you’ll have striking blooms year after year!

Be sure to check out these great gardening ideas while you’re here!

The Best Plants that Grow in Shade

Container Plants that Love Full Sun

Fast Growing Privacy Trees

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