Brightly colored flowers resemble small, spurred snapdragons (Antirrhinum majus). Easy to grow; thrive in light or sandy soil. Look best when planted in masses, as individual plants are rather wispy. Toadflaxes are not usually browsed by deer.
L. hybrids. Annuals. The Fantasy series produces compact plants to 1 ft. high, 68 in. wide, with very narrow, bluish green leaves. Clusters of - to 1-in. flowers appear in spring and summer, come in blue with yellow throat, magenta, pink, yellow, and white. 'Enchantment' has very fragrant magenta-and-gold flowers on plants to 16 in. high.
L. maroccana. BABY SNAPDRAGON, TOADFLAX. Annual. From Morocco. To 12 ft. high, 6 in. wide. Light green, narrow leaves to 1 in. long. Summer flowers to in. long, in rose, pink, mauve, chamois, blue, violet, purple, or a red-and-gold combination; all are blotched with a different shade on the lip. Spur is longer than flower. Fairy Bouquet strain is only 9 in. tall and has larger flowers in pastel colors. Northern Lights strain features shades of red, orange, and yellow, as well as bicolors.
Seed baby snapdragon in quantity for a show. It performs best during cool weather. Where winters are cold, sow in early spring after danger of frost is past, then again in late summer; in mild-winter areas, sow in late summer for fall bloom, then again in autumn for winter flowers.
L. purpurea. PURPLE TOADFLAX. Perennial. From southern Europe. Narrow, bushy, erect plant to 24 ft. tall, 10 in. wide. Blue-green, very narrow leaves; violet-blue, -in. summer flowers. 'Canon Went' is a pink form. Short lived in hot, humid regions, but volunteer seedlings ensure a continuing supply.
L. reticulata. Annual. From Portugal and North Africa. To 24 ft. tall, 10 in. wide, with very narrow, bluish green leaves and showers of small purple-and-orange flowers in late spring and summer. 'Flamenco' (11 ft. high) has yellow flowers with a conspicuous maroon blotch. 'Flaming Passion' (16 in. high, 8 in. wide) has red flowers with yellow centers.
L. vulgaris. COMMON TOADFLAX, BUTTER-AND-EGGS. Perennial. From Europe and Asia; naturalized in North America. Stiffly erect habit to 13 ft. high, 1 ft. wide. Narrow, pale green leaves to 2 in. long; pale yellow blossoms to 1 in. wide from spring into fall. Invasive, weedy plant; unleash it in a cottage garden, where you are more likely to appreciate its propensity to spread by rhizomes and self-sow.