Gardeners who are short on time or looking to make the most of their purchases often look to perennial flowers as their go-to. Perennial flowers only need to be planted once and can be enjoyed season after season in many climates. These hardy plants last more than three years and are reliably beautiful additions to any landscape. From flowering shrubs to climbing vines, it’s hard to go wrong with perennial flowers.
Trollius is a beautiful globeflower in the Ranunculaceae family, which is related to buttercups. It produces globular, or spherical, blooms when given the adequate amount of shade. Trollius thrives in wet, boggy soils with part to full shade. It cannot tolerate dry soil, and too much sun will eventually bleach its leaves. Trollius blooms from May to July and cannot thrive in hot temperatures.
False goat’s beard is an attractive wildflower with fluffy plumes and leaves that are reminiscent of ferns. It loves shade and blooms exceptionally in the late spring and summer, with some varieties blooming into the fall. Gardeners in zones three through eight can enjoy false goat’s beard and its spectacular height, which can reach up to six feet. This flower also attracts hummingbirds, butterflies, moths, and bees to your garden, which will increase pollination and help the environment. Plant false goat’s beard in soil that has been enriched with compost or organic matter.
As a bulb perennial and a great cut flower, ranunculus are profuse bloomers that will yield as many as three dozen flowers per bulb. They are winter hardy and will reward a patient gardener with fluffy blooms year after year. They love well-drained soil, and their bulbs — called “corms” — should be soaked for a few hours before planting. They need a long, cool season to develop roots before the warmth of late spring, so plant them once the danger of frost has passed in early spring.
Lenten rose is another perennial in the buttercup family that loves partial shade and is hardy in USDA zones four through nine. It's not actually a rose at all, nor do its flowers have petals. The plant has petal-like sepals that are long-lasting and help this plant have an eight to ten-week blooming period. It should be planted in late fall or early spring. Its evergreen groundcover is also a bonus for homeowners looking to add some color to the landscape during the dreary winters.
Delphinium can be a fickle flower when you’re attempting to grow it for the first time, but its stately height and ability to attract hummingbirds make it worth the effort. Delphinium likes a cool, moist summer environment, faring poorly in areas with hot summers. Delphinium is best grown from seed, since they’re expensive to buy and will grow profusely enough to divide. Delphinium likes soil enriched with compost and needs well-drained soil with full sun. Seeds should be sown in the spring.
Clematis’ beautiful vines are dazzling, and their large blooms add to the display. Multiple varieties offer different types of blooms, including double blossoms, bell-shaped flowers, and smaller blossoms. It takes a few years to fully mature, but vines that are a few years old will bloom in mid-June and then again in late summer. Most varieties enjoy full sun but need to have their roots kept cool. The best way to achieve this is by mulching their roots or allowing a low-growing plant or shrub to cover the area around the base of the plant. It is hardy in USDA zones four through nine.
If you’re looking for a no-fuss perennial that you don’t have to tend to at all, lilies are the way to go. Lilies can grow in almost any soil, either acidic or alkaline, and don’t mind full sun, partial sun, or even dappled shade. They can be planted in the fall or spring and will bloom at any time from early summer to fall, depending on the variety. They’re reliable bloomers for years after the initial planting. Many lilies have a delightful scent and make excellent cut flowers. Make sure to keep cut lilies in a cool, shady place in your home. When the foliage dies in the fall, simply cut the plant down until the next growing season.
Columbine is another perennial plant that isn’t too picky about its soil and will bloom profusely in full sun. It does not need too much water, just enough to keep its soil slightly moist. Columbine blooms from the middle of spring to early summer, and its leaves turn an attractive maroon color in the fall. If you want immediate color and blooms in your garden, you’ll need to buy columbine plants since plants started from seed in the spring don’t flower until the following year. This beautiful, hummingbird-attracting plant blooms in zones three through nine and should have partial shade in areas with very hot summers.
Shasta daisies’ quaint blooms make them a great fit for flowerbed borders and cottage gardens. They don’t bloom for many years, so planting them every few years can help them remain a mainstay in your garden for years to come. Gardeners in USDA zone four can enjoy Shasta daisies. Deadheading spent flowers is one of the best ways to encourage profuse flowering, and using them as cut flowers also encourages more blooms to grow. Shasta daisies prefer a lightly shaded area and soil enriched with organic matter.
Roses are the most spectacularly blooming plants, and their global adoration makes them available everywhere. The best way to start your roses is by purchasing plants or cuttings. They like loamy soil, which can be achieved by mixing compost and other organic matter into whatever soil you have. Some roses are climbers, and some are bush varieties, so be sure to buy the type that suits your space. Many roses are hardy to USDA zone 2, so almost every gardener can enjoy the fantastic display. Most roses need full sun and regular watering. If you live in an area with harsh winters, bury the stem of your rose to protect it from the harsh elements and wind.
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