by Debra Wyatt
(last updated September 14, 2016)
Perennials are great plants and are very satisfying to have in your garden. You don't have to keep buying them every year, and the ones that are treasured can keep producing for a long time. Perennials can be considered expensive, but for the money they are a great deal and a great investment. Perennials come back year after year and require little maintenance.
Before buying any perennials or falling in love with a particular plant you will want to be sure that the plant will meet your needs. You should also consider how healthy the plants look. They should have sturdy stems with a good foliage color. Take time to inspect the plant look for disease spots or insects. A diseased plant would have some of the following indications:
Perennials can be planted in the spring, summer, or fall. When planting in the summer the soil needs to stay moist, so it will require watering. Water the newly planted plants daily until they are well established. You will be able to see new starts on the leaves when the plant has been established. After they are established then for the first year they will need to be watered about every four to five days, if it doesn't rain. The plants need to be planted in soil that drains well since too much water can kill the roots.
To be considered a full sun perennial the plant will need at least six to eight hours of full sunlight, preferably eight hours of direct sun each day. Full sun perennials do require a minimum of six hours of daily sunlight, even in the spring and fall. The best time of day for your plants to receive sun would be between 9:00 am and 3:00 pm. If your garden doesn't receive at least the minimum amount of sun then you need to consider part shade perennials.
When planting your garden take time to look and see how tall the plants can get. You will want to plant the taller plants towards the back and the shorter plants in front of the taller plants. This way all the flowers will receive the sun that they need. (You'll be able to enjoy their blossoms better with this arrangement, as well.)
Full sun perennials do well with regular maintenance. This would include pruning and dividing the plants. Dividing the plants is best for the plants when it's done in the late winter or early spring. Pruning is best to be done in the springtime before new growth starts; whenever you do prune, though, it does encourage new growth.
If problems cropped up last year it is best to deal with those problems before the perennials start to grow this year. When there is a dead spot in the middle of the plants, just simply cut the dead part out. Soon the hole will be covered with new plants. This will give them the entire summer to reorganize themselves.
Once you have your perennials planted you will be able to enjoy your garden for years to come.
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