Tip of the Week: Want More Drama in Your Yard?
They show up in sensational shapes-from spikes and mounds to petals delicate and demur. Perennials offer ever-changing colors and textures. Some live in the sun, others like the shade. Consequently, many people are relying on perennials to reduce large expanses of annual flowers in their gardens.
Perennials offer a solid, sustainable option for ongoing seasonal color. And their bloom times can offer color before and after the growing season for annuals. Late summer and early fall are great times to plant and divide perennials. If you need a Saturday project, now’s the time to plant perennials.
3 Good reasons to plant perennials
They reduce. Once established, low-water perennials can help reduce the amount of water needed to maintain non-stop outdoor color. Many drought tolerant varieties are available. Consider the Plant Select perennials developed by Colorado State University with Denver Botanic Gardens that withstand and thrive in Colorado’s often challenging conditions.
Varieties that don’t require deadheading also reduce the amount of ongoing maintenance required. That’s good news for busy people who would rather be picking fresh tomatoes than spent blooms.
They reuse. Plant a perennial once and that same plant gets re-used in the landscape year after year. Perennials provide great value because, unlike annuals, you purchase and plant them once-and they return to bloom again many years. Plus, after that first growing season when they become established, they usually get bigger and showier with age.
They recycle. After a few growing seasons, many perennials outgrow their available space. That’s good news for the gardener who can divide the plants into two or three more plants and recycle them to other areas of the yard.
Toward the end of summer is prime time to divide perennials. Grasses, iris, rudbeckia and daisies are just a few examples of perennials that can be successfully recycled by dividing and planting elsewhere.Create a planting plan.