Perennials for Sun
‘Montrose White’ Calamintha is an upright, self-cleaning mounded perennial with sprays of white flowers all summer long. Being in the mint family, Calamintha is fragrant, attracting butterflies and hummingbirds while deer and rabbits steer clear. It will grow 12”-18” high without flopping, making a pretty choice for a sunny border. If bees are of concern, site in a less trafficked area to allow bees to have their space.
Allium is another easy care and good looking perennial. Like Calamintha, it is drought-tolerant, deer and rabbit resistant and attracts pollinators. The flower globes of this ornamental onion come in a variety of colors, including pink, purple, blue and white and soar over the grass-like foliage. Allium comes in different varieties and heights, all thriving in full sun and good for cutting. Try combining them with coneflowers or tall phlox in a perennial garden. For something different, paint the globes once the flowers are spent for continued whimsical fun shapes.
Sedums thrive in any sunny, well drained location. They have become very popular for use in gardens and containers due to their thick, succulent foliage that provides contrast in color, texture and form. Some are 3”-6” and make excellent groundcover. Other sedums are taller and strong-stemmed, adding drama with bold colored foliage and bright flowers. Sedums bloom Julye through September in assorted colors. There are so many options of this well-behaved plant, it’s no wonder they are a favorite.
Perennials for Shade
Hosta make walking through a shade garden seem like an oasis. Their big, bold foliage comes in a wide variety of sizes, shapes, colors, and textures. Hostas become focal points and conversation pieces. They can line a walkway or be displayed as a group of mixed varieties. Most boom white or lavender anywhere from June to August. Dappled shade, ample water, and average soil make hostas happy. Blue foliaged hostas need more shade while yellow foliaged hostas do better with a little sun.
Astilbe contrasts nicely against large Hosta leaves, making them great combination plants in a shade garden. They have plume-like flowers and lush, mounded foliage. Astilbe is another fragrant pollinator plant that is rabbit resistant. Foliage and blooms come in assorted colors and the varieties offer different heights as well. All Astilbe perform best in part shade and moist soil. The flowers make beautiful cut arrangements. Plant in a border, or mass together for a stunning display.
Hakonechloa Grass, or Japanese Forest Grass, is a graceful, slow-spreading perennial ornamental grass that has the effect of a weeping bamboo. It grows 12”-18” in part shade and moist, well-drained soil. Its mounding, cascading habit is a great companion to ferns, hosta and dark-leaved coral bells. The yellow and variegated varieties brighten up a lackluster shade garden.