First year sleep, second year creep and third year leap!! Have you figured out what I’m talking about yet? A wise person once told me in my quest – bound and determined to learn more about something I loved but new little about … I use this term every Spring through Fall in the greenhouse when customers inquire about “these” particular flowers. PERENNIALS, yes, that is what this fun little saying refers to. Perennials are the flowers that return year after year and are often unfussy and long-lived. While trees and shrubs form the bones and annuals add bright notes to a garden – it’s perennials, the herbaceous, nonwoody plants that go dormant in the fall and return in the spring that provide the textures, forms and calculated sequence of colorful blooms that every garden needs!
As our first truck load of perennials arrived at the store yesterday and when I returned home from work, I found one of my favorite magazines in the mailbox – it had perennials plastered all over the cover! I guess this means it TIME, time to get the garden prepped and ready for planting.
Back to my little saying (sleep, creep, leap) this is a guide to remind you when starting a perennial garden or adding to an existing one – you cant expect leaps and bounds the very first year of planting. Perennials take time, time to come into their own.
Planting a perennial garden from the beginning can be a daunting task considering the myriad of species available. The article I read in my magazine did an amazing job of listing and guiding new perennial gardeners to flowers that work will in most climates and with minimal care.
Early Risers : spring to the start of summer 1. Hellebore 2. False Indigo 3. Siberian Iris
Heat Seekers : early to late summer 1. Coneflower 2. Cranesbill 3. Phlox 4. Delphinium
Late Bloomers : end of summer through fall 1. Sneezeweed 2. Black-eyed Susan 3. Aster
This is just a very small taste of perennials and there is much more to learn and love about these amazing flowers. Just remember when planting what the wise person told me: First year sleep, Second year creep and Third year leap!! With a little patience and time, you will have an abundant – glorious garden filled amazing perennials. HAPPY PLANTING!
If you have any questions regarding a perennial garden and any other questions/concerns about flowers etc. Check out our website listed above. We have a master gardener available to answer you questions 7 days a week!