Coral Flowers: The Trending Color Your Garden Needs Now

Coral Flowers Your Garden Needs Now - Longfield Gardens

People who work in interior design, graphic design, fashion or homewares, are always tracking color trends. They find clues in unexpected places, from top travel destinations and movie sets, to food, art, books, social media and even gardens!

One of the most respected authorities for color trends is the Pantone Color Institute. Pantone’s color matching system has long been the global standard for both the print and the textile industries. Each year, the company identifies a set of trending colors – ten for spring and ten for fall. From these they also select a “color of the year.”

Coral Flowers Your Garden Needs Now - Longfield Gardens

This Year’s Color of the Year

For 2019, Pantone’s color of the year is “living coral.” It’s a warm, pink-orange that’s brighter than peach, but softer than carrot. Think salmon and you’ll be very close. Pantone describes it as “sociable and spirited…vibrant, yet mellow…an animated, life-affirming shade of orange, with golden undertones that energizes and enlivens with a softer edge.”

Most gardeners don’t pay much attention to color trends, but we can all can use a creative nudge now and then. This year’s color of the year is the most garden-friendly choice in a long time. It’s a lovely hue on its own and can inspire all sorts of satisfying combinations.

Coral Flowers Your Garden Needs Now - Longfield Gardens

Tulip Apricot Impression

Dahlias That Play Into the Coral Theme

If you’re looking for flowers with coral-colored blossoms, dahlias offer lots of fabulous choices. In the world of wedding flowers, coral has been coming on strong for several years now. Brides are leaving pale pink behind in favor of flowers with warmer, bolder hues.

Coral Flowers Your Garden Needs Now - Longfield Gardens

Dahlia Labyrinth – Available Again in 2020

Some of the most popular dahlias for weddings are dinnerplates. The flowers have the same lushness as peonies, with a slightly more contemporary look. Floral designers are especially fond of dinnerplate dahlia varieties with frilly petals such as Belle of Barmera, Fairway Spur and Penhill Watermelon.

Coral Flowers Your Garden Needs Now - Longfield Gardens

Dahlia Great Silence

Decorative dahlias offer an even wider range of color combinations and flower styles, with varieties such as Great Silence, Karma Corona and Felida Solar Flare. For containers and borders, Gallery Pablo is a winner.

Coral Flowers Your Garden Needs Now - Longfield Gardens

New for 2019: Flirty Fleurs Sorbetto Collection

Last summer, gardener and floral designer Alicia Schwede developed two new dahlia collections for us to offer in 2019. Both the Flirty Fleurs Sorbetto Collection and the Flirty Fleurs Ravenna Collection have a coral theme. Gardeners may be more tuned into color trends than we thought!

Coral Flowers Your Garden Needs Now - Longfield Gardens

This hibiscus flower shows how easily coral can blend with hot pink, yellow, gold, orange and even red.

Other Coral-Colored Flowers

There are many annuals, perennials and bulbs that bloom in this beautiful color. Here are some plants — and suggested varieties — that have coral flowers:


  • Snapdragons: Madam Butterfly Bronze with White or Potomac Orange (Johnny’s)
  • Zinnias: Oklahoma Salmon, Dreamland Coral and Benary’s Giant Salmon Rose (Johnny’s)
  • Diascia: Coral Belle, Coral Canyon
  • Impatiens: Infinity Salmon, Accent Salmon, Tumbler Salmon
  • Coleus: Henna, Wizard Coral Sunrise, Copper Coral
  • Sweet Peas: Valerie Harrod

Coral Flowers Your Garden Needs Now - Longfield Gardens


  • Dianthus: Coral Reef, Zing Salmon, Supra Salmon
  • Roses: Coral Knock Out rose, Abraham Darby, Christopher Marlowe
  • Peony: Coral Charm
  • Poppy: Princess Victoria Louise, Helen Elizabeth,


Other plants that have varieties with coral-colored flowers include: gladiolus, cannas, hibiscus, gerberas, begonias, calibrachoa and petunias.

Coral Flowers Your Garden Needs Now - Longfield Gardens

This bold planting at the Montreal Botanical Garden shows the power of pairing warm with warm.

Color Partners for Coral Flowers

Not every color harmonizes with coral, so you’ll want to give some thought to creating good partnerships. This warm, tropical hue looks great with flowers that have a similar warmth, such as burgundy, red, pink, ivory, yellow, gold and orange. Or, for an even bolder combination, pair coral flowers with periwinkle or violet-blue.

Coral Flowers Your Garden Needs Now - Longfield Gardens

A lovely coral-colored canna with teal blue foliage.

Foliage gives you another opportunity to play up the beauty of coral-colored flowers. Teal blue is coral’s complementary color, so plants with blue-green foliage such as lavender, juniper and eucalyptus are always good companions. The same goes for grey-blues such as lamb’s ears and dusty miller. Olive green foliage also looks great with warm, orangey-pinks.

Coral Flowers Your Garden Needs Now - Longfield Gardens

Hyacinth Gypsy Queen

If coral is not a color that you normally gravitate to, this is the year to stretch your boundaries! If you’re already a fan of this lovely hue, this is the year to indulge yourself!  To learn more about making the most of this trending color, check out these related articles: How to Use Pink in Your Flower Garden and How to Use Orange in Your Flower Garden.