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Tuesday, June 2, 2009

Placing perennials

When you look for the perfect spot to plant your new perennial what do you consider first? Do you look at the bloom or do you look at the foliage?

As a beginning gardener I only looked at the bloom but as I've gained experience, I've learned to consider the foliage first and then if possible also look at the bloom.

Since perennials bloom for a shorter time period than annuals, my goal is to form a tapestry of foliage color, form and texture so that even if the plants aren't in bloom, they create a pleasing picture.

Some plants are just so easy to work with. If I had 100 pots of the bright Hakonechloa macra 'All Gold' I could find 100 great combinations. Unfortunately this plant is hard to find and when you do find it, it tends to be very pricey.

The hardy Geranium sanguinium at the bottom of this photo is a bit easier to find and quite a bit less expensive but just as easy to make wonderful combinations with.

An excellent foliage plant that is not at all expensive is Lamium. A gardening friend Joan found a six pack of these beauties at one of the local box stores. I might have to go and get some more for myself.
When working with the succulents in my little rock garden, it's easy to mix and match foliage colors and forms. While there are blooms here it's easy to see how the foliage is the big picture.

Off to play in the garden ;-)


  1. Please tell me - what is the name of the yellow sedum blooming in the pot? It looks so pretty!

  2. Hi! The yellow Sedum is a beauty, it's Sedum senanense and garden visitors are constantly drawn to it. If you happen to live on Long Island, I bought it last year at the Talmage Farm Agway in Riverhead.

    As you can see, it came through the winter just fine in this old clay pot.


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