Perennials Are Good Investments

Perennials Are Good Investments

Perennials are ideal flower garden plants because they come back every year -- and get better. 
When you visit your local garden center for flowers for your garden, there are two types of plants trying to compete for your attention: annuals and perennials.

Annuals are great for flower gardens because most types bloom nonstop until frost. They get the name annuals because you have to plant them every year.

Perennials, on the other hand, are perfect for flower gardens because they come back every year -- you only have to plant them once. Even better, they grow a little more each year (some grow a lot more), so the plants typically produce more and more flowers the older they get. Some gardeners don't like perennials because they're typically more expensive than annuals and most varieties don't have as long of a bloom season. 

The secret to getting a colorful flower garden from spring to fall is to plant a variety of perennials, so you always have one starting to bloom as another one fades. To start the season, for example,  go with spring garden plants like creeping phlox and candytuft, followed by iris and peonies. Then for late spring and early summer, Asiatic lilies and yarrow. For flowers throughout the summer, look at plants such as coneflower and daylily. Plant phlox and Russian sage for late summer, then sedum and aster for autumn. 

Another aspect that makes perennials a good investment is that you can divide many varieties as they grow and mature. For example, two years after you buy a summer garden phlox, it may be established enough that you can split it in two --- that's a free plant you can use somewhere else in your yard or trade with friends/neighbors for a another plant you don't have. 

Written by Justin Hancock