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For months we have been wanting, waiting and willing to plant but now the time has finally come to put the trowel into the soil and get some flowers planted. For many there is confusion over the different types of flowering plants, what get planted when and where so now is as a good of a time as any to help with those questions.
First, perennials are plants that come back every year. They appear in the spring, do their thing in the summer and sleep all winter long. There are many perennial plants that act very differently in your garden. There are evergreen perennials like Lavender, Foam Flower and Candytuft. There are other perennials that are short lived like Delphinium and Gallardia. There are shrubby perennials like Buddleia and Caryopteris. Long living perennials include Baptisia and Peonies. The benefit to perennials is that they return year after year while the draw-back is that they typically have a limited bloom time.
Annual plants grow, bloom and die all in one season. Realizing we are in a cold climate, some plants that are perennial elsewhere are annuals here. For example Geraniums are prolific perennials in warmer conditions but just annuals for us. The benefit of annuals is that they bloom constantly, providing the most flowering of all types of plants. The limitation is obviously that they do not return for another season. Many gardeners are finding that annuals are actually less work than perennials and provide the color that makes the landscape something special.
Tropicals are plants native to climates surrounding the equator where temperatures remain warm year-round. Tropical plants have become very popular for several reasons; there are many that perform in very hot and dry conditions, the colors from many blooming tropicals are brilliant and these plants bring a tropical look to our local gardens, patios and door steps. Larger plants are available to make a dramatic statement when and where it is needed. Many tropicals can be wintered indoors and returned outside once the spring weather returns.
So you are thinking “maybe I can use some annuals or tropicals to spark my landscape this year” but “what should I plant?”
The selections can be daunting but let me point out some of the toughest, most durable and highest performing annuals and tropicals that are sure to make a splash in your gardens.
Dragon Wing Begonais
Dipladenia stars and stripes