Perennials offer possibilities for every growing situation. As you contemplate digging into perennial gardening, approach it from the standpoint of solving landscape problems. There's a perennial that will thrive in every growing situation.
If you have a slope too steep for mowing, you can trade turf for a perennial groundcover. Near downspouts and low spots in your yard where water gathers after downpours, moisture-loving perennials can transform an eyesore into a beauty spot. Where lower rainfall dictates water restrictions, tap into the world of xeriscape plants, which grow and flower profusely with little moisture. Natural deposits of acidic soil can support lovely perennials that will make you grateful for the locally low pH. Stop fighting to grow grass beneath shade trees -- plant shade-loving perennials instead.
You can even find perennials that serve as lawn stand-ins -- tidy, ground-hugging plants that withstand foot traffic and stay green year-round. In municipalities where surface runoff adds charges to your water bill, incorporating a rain garden filled with moisture-loving perennials will dissipate roof, driveway, or patio runoff into the soil and can reduce your water fees. Use the listing of perennials adapted to various growing conditions, below, to draft solutions to your landscaping problems.
Perennial plantings transform an outdoor living area into a garden escape. Mingling flowering shrubs, such as hydrangea and shrub roses, with long bloomers, such as black-eyed Susan, stages a season-long color show. For every problem area in your landscape, you'll find perennials that not only survive but also thrive in the conditions available. Simply match the preferred growing conditions of each perennial to the site.