Hi Dee in Newport Beach, I grew up in Mission Viejo, just a few miles from you. You have a very special coastal growing climate and you have a lot of choices. Almost all the plants I mention below are perennial in your climate though usually grown as annuals elsewhere. Excellent flowering bedding plants for you include hybrid Impatiens walleriana and New Guinea Impatiens hybrids. The wallerianas have green foliage and profuse blooms in shades from white through magenta. Well-kept they form mounds studded with hundreds of flowers. The New Guinea hybrids have brighter flowers, often colored foliage, and grow a little taller. They also take more sun but in your marine climate you can plant almost anything in full sun. Lobelia maritima provides low mounds of brilliant blue, white, pink or purple. It tends to bloom year-round in Newport Beach. You can grow an immense range of sages. Salvia elegans (pineapple sage) has light green foliage that really smells like that. In fall it shoots spikes of brilliant scarlet tubular flowers. Salvia patens has blue flowers and is tuberous. Coleus (now perhaps called Solenostemon?) also come in various sizes. With pinching and fertilizer they form large, beautiful mounds. You can't go wrong with Cosmos hybrids, either white/pink/purple or yellow/orange/red. These are strict annuals and are very easy from seed. If you let a few go to seed you won't have to replant them. There are Dahlia hybrids of many heights; they tend to bloom around now. They do well in NB. Plus they are tuberous. And many different pelargoniums (sold as "geraniums") have either flowers or brightly colored foliage in the fall. Finally, consider some of the more beautiful vegetables, like the dark purple, almost black-leaved Black Knight pepper, perennial in your climate, or Bright Lights Swiss chard, with stalks white, yellow, orange, pink and red. Chard is a biennial, and the bloom stalk the second year is as delicious as the leaves.