According to a Royal Botanic Gardens report, there are about 369,000 flowering plant species currently known to science. From this enormous number, numerous flowers start with R.
Some of the most striking flowers that begin with the letter R are the alluring shrub Red Twig Dogwood, the carnivorous Round-leaved Sundew, and the medicinal Rue Anemone. Other flowering plants, such as the Rose Mallow, Ranunculus, and Russian Sage, are more common in gardens, indoor spaces, and bouquets, but they’re just as captivating.
From roses and flowering shrubs to fragrant flowers and medicinal plants, here are 11 exceptional flowers that start with R. Let’s get started!
The Rain Lily is a tropical perennial wildflower named after its proclivity to bloom after heavy rain. It starts out nondescript with its grassy evergreen foliage, then tiny delicate six-petaled star-shaped white, pink, white, or orange flowers pop up through the leaves.
Rain Lilies bloom from late winter through early summer and are often grown as ornamental flowers, covering front borders and path edges.
While Rain Lilies may take some time to bloom, they’re relatively easy to grow and maintain. They require plenty of sunlight but are unaffected by a little shade. They also require frequent watering, but not to the point where their roots sit in sodden soil.
Rampion, also known as Rampion Bellflower, is a genus of 40 Campanulaceae species native to the Mediterranean’s sunny fields and mountainous regions.
It’s a mid-summer-blooming that produces slender, clustered five-petaled purple or pink horn-like buds and flowers.
Rampion flowers are more than just a pretty sight, though. They’ve always been primarily cultivated for culinary purposes.
Their shoots have a spinach-like texture and can be cooked or used in salads like spinach. The seeds can be used in place of coffee or baking powder. Even the flowers can be eaten, though they can be bitter.
More interestingly, Rampion leaves and roots are used to treat hydrophobia in Russia.
Ranunculus, also known as the Buttercup, is a large genus of about 600 flowering plant species that belong to the Ranunculaceae family. Despite being a perennial, Ranunculus is considered annual because it can’t survive the winter in USDA zones 7 and below.
Except for South America and North Africa, this extremely popular flowering plant can be found almost anywhere. Its beautiful, rose-like flowers come in a variety of colors and shades, including pink, red, yellow, orange, and white.
Once established, Ranunculus flowers will only need watering once per week during the dry season. Depending on the species and climate, Ranunculus flowers usually bloom from late winter through early summer, though they can bloom for a month less or more.
What sets these rose-like flowers apart is their incredible vase life of 10–12 days, making them ideal for fresh bouquets.
4. Rattlesnake Master (Eryngium yuccifolium)
Rattlesnake Master is a carrot-family perennial forb native to North America. Its inflorescence contains three to twenty flower heads that can grow to be an inch in diameter.
These flower heads bloom in the summer, forming hemispherical heads of dense aggregations of many tiny white flowers that resemble thistles.
Rattlesnake Master flowers are popular as ornamental plants because of their distinct appearance. Just keep in mind that the Rattlesnake Master is an aggressive self-feeder, so its seed heads must be removed to prevent it from overgrowing and taking over the entire garden.
Red Hot Poker, also known as Torch Lily, is a genus of herbaceous perennials that bloom tall, bold flower spikes in coral shades of red, orange, and yellow. In some species, these flower spikes can reach up to eight feet tall.
A Red Hot Poker will not only add a tropical flair to your garden. It’ll also attract a variety of pollinators such as bees, butterflies, and even hummingbirds.
The Red Hot Poker’s tropical appearance shouldn’t intimidate you. This eye-catching plant is surprisingly easy to maintain. All it requires is full sun and moist, well-draining soil to grow magnificently.
That said, in some cases, if provided favorable conditions, Torch Lilies can be aggressive growers, bordering on invasive.
The Red Twig Dogwood, also known as Red Osier Dogwood, is a deciduous flowering shrub native to North America—not to be confused with other Dogwood trees.
Growing a Red Twig Dogwood ensures that your garden is always a sight to behold, no matter the season.
Red Twig Dogwoods bloom in clusters of creamy-white flowers in the spring. In the summer, these blooms are followed by white berries with hints of blue and green.
In the fall, the dark green foliage begins to show hints of rose or gold. When the foliage on Red Twig Dogwoods falls off in the winter, the stems transform from green to a ferocious red, which is what most people grow Red Twig Dogwoods for.
Luckily, Red Twig Dogwoods are one of the few shrubs that can tolerate both boggy conditions and a little neglect. They only require regular watering during dry spells and annual pruning to maintain the stems’ vibrant winter color.
Rodgersia pinnata, also known simply as Rodgersia, is a flowering plant in the Saxifragaceae family. It’s an architectural perennial native to China that prefers partially shaded, moist soils near ponds or streams.
Rodgersia leaves turn a purple-bronze caste in the spring, but bright green when the flowers bloom in the mid to late summer. The blooms, on the other hand, are typically white or pink and clustered at the top of the Rodgersia. Some varieties can produce white, pink, or yellow buds.
Rose Mallow, also known as Swamp Mallow or Swamp Hibiscus, is totally unrelated to Roses. It’s a beautiful perennial plant from the Hibiscus family that grows in swamps and wetlands in the eastern United States.
Rose Mallows bloom in a variety of stunning vibrant color variations, including pink, red, yellow, and white, with deep red centers that instantly draw everyone’s attention. These flowers bloom from late summer to early fall, or until the first frost.
The leaves and roots of Rose Mallows have some medicinal benefits, often used to treat urinary tract inflammation and digestive ailments. What’s more, they can withstand high heat and drought, making them ideal for creating low-maintenance but colorful gardens.
9. Round-Leaved Sundew (Drosera rotundifolia)
Round-leaved Sundew is a peculiar but beautiful plant that grows in boggy, acidic, nutrient-deficient areas, particularly among soggy Sphagnum mosses on wet heaths and peat moors.
It’s one of the most common sundew species, found in the UK, northern North America, Siberia, Korea, and Japan. It’s also found in some southern regions of North America.
Round-leaved Sundews are small carnivorous plants. However, what makes them enticing and easily recognizable are the long, red hair-like tendrils on their leaves. These tendrils are covered with glistening dew droplets that Sundews produce to attract insects.
In the summer, the tightly curled flowering stem unfurls, allowing four-petaled white or pink flowers to bloom at the top of the hairless stems.
It’s often confused with the less common Oblong-leaved Sundew, but you can tell the difference between both species by the shape of their leaves.
One interesting fact about these Sundews is that their dew was once used to make anti-aging potions because it was thought to be a source of youth and virility.
10. Rue Anemone (Thalictrum thalictroides)
Rue Anemone is a perennial plant native to eastern North America and known for its serene-looking flowers.
This delicate plant produces small white or pale pink flowers from early spring to mid-summer, complemented by soft green foliage. Some Rue Anemone varieties may even have double blooms that look like miniature roses.
Interestingly, even though Rue Anemone flowers are mildly toxic, their roots are often used for medicinal purposes. They’re used to treat nausea, diarrhea, ulcers, headaches, eye infections, gout, and even leprosy.
Aside from being a miracle plant, Rue Anemone is a perfect addition to woodlands and shaded gardens. It can handle a variety of soil conditions, from acidic and alkaline to neutral. It also doesn’t require much watering.
11. Russian Sage (Perovskia atriplicifolia)
Russian Sage is a tall, bushy perennial prized for its lavender-blue flowers and silvery gray fragrant foliage. The plant begins with attractive aromatic serrated or wavy silvery foliage.
Then, a cloud of slender spike-like clusters of lavender-blue flowers forms above the foliage, completely covering the leaves.
Surprisingly, Russian Sage, which bears some resemblance to lavender, smells like a cross between sage and lavender.
Russian Sage is commonly planted as part of a privacy border or a cut flower garden due to its low maintenance. It’s also drought-resistant once established and stays colorful almost all year.
Wrap-Up On Flowers That Start With R
While this list doesn’t include all of the flowers that start with R, it does include some of the most fascinating and eye-catching flowers. Bonus: most of them are low-maintenance and can bloom in a variety of conditions.
Whether you’re looking for a fragrant, edible, or one-of-a-kind flower, you’re sure to find one that piques your interest.
So, don’t be afraid to start planting and watch your space transform into something magical!
Back to Petals And Hedges home page
Read more from our wedding flowers ideas category