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Perennials vs. Annuals

Most perennials come back year after year and an added plus is they are extremely disease and pest resistant making them a welcome addition to your landscape. Unlike most annuals that die after the first frost, perennials go dormant for the winter, but they come back to life the next spring usually bigger and better.

Perennials generally cost more, but for their longevity they are well worth the investment. They are sold in many pot and plant sizes and smaller is more cost effective and they grow rather quickly. Perennials are available as seeds, bareroot and potted plants. Perennials also do not require much fertilizer while annuals are generally heavy feeders to keep them in top condition and blooming prolifically.

Annuals sometimes bloom continuously in spring and summer where perennials have specific bloom times, including early spring sometimes with freezing temperatures and even snow still on the ground. Perennials have an early season, mid-season and late season. (spring, summer and fall) The key to a perfect garden is to plant and mix in succession for continuous bloom and color throughout the growing season. Most perennials can be divided and spread to additional beds or shared with friends. They keep on giving. I have daffodils and jonquils that have moved to every home I’ve lived in and they are usually my first welcoming sight after a long dreary winter.

Here are some examples of perennials for different seasons:

Spring: Peonies, Iris, Hellebore, Moss Phlox

Summer: Echinacea, Gaillardia, Garden Phlox, Coreopsis, Guara

Fall: Chrysanthemums, Russian Sage and many other sages, Aster, Sedum

There are hundreds of plants to choose from when it comes to perennials for a lasting investment. Go shopping and enjoy the variety.

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