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15 of Our Favorite Perennials for the Landscape

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When considering the broad and diverse collection of perennials, it was difficult to narrow the list down to only 15. In order to make this list, each plant must meet all of the following criteria: low yearly maintenance, long lived in the landscape, a long season of interest, and it has to have that X factor that makes it someone's favorite. Are there others? Certainly, but we think these are the ones you absolutely can't miss.

US Perennial Trial Sites:
  • Chicago Botanical Garden, Glencoe, IL. Zone 5
  • Dallas Arboretum, Dallas, TX. Zone 8
  • Four Star Greenhouse, Carleton, MI. Zone 6
  • University of Minnesota, Morris, MN. Zone 4
  • Pleasant View Gardens, Loudon, NH. Zone 5
  • University of Georgia, Athens, GA. Zone 8
  • Virginia Tech, Blacksburg, VA. Zone 6
  • Walters Gardens, Zeeland, MI. Zone 6
Panicum virgatum 'Apache Rose'
PRAIRIE WINDS® Grasses
  • Midsize, dense and upright habit
  • Rosy red panicles instead of the common tan
  • Height: 4'
  • Width: 2½'
  • Zones: 4-9
  • Exposure: Full Sun
More About 'Apache Rose'
Hosta 'Autumn Frost'
SHADOWLAND® Collection
  • Exceedingly showy, unique color scheme
  • Consistent performance year after year
  • Height: 12"
  • Width: 24"
  • Zones: 3-9
  • Exposure: Part - Full Shade
More About 'Autumn Frost'
Hibiscus 'Berry Awesome'
SUMMERIFIC® Collection
  • Densely compact, rounded habit - rather than vase shape
  • Massive 7-8” flowers the length of the stem
  • Height: 4'
  • Width: 4½-5'
  • Zones: 4-9
  • Exposure: Full - Part Sun
More About 'Berry Awesome'
Heuchera 'Black Pearl'
PRIMO® Series
  • Extremely vigorous and rugged - even in full sun!
  • Very intense black color
  • Height: 8-10"
  • Width: 18-20"
  • Zones: 4-9
  • Exposure: Full Sun - Full Shade
More About 'Black Pearl'
Schizachyrium scoparium 'Blue Paradise'
PRAIRIE WINDS® Grasses
  • Vase shaped, incredibly full habit stays upright through winter
  • Four seasons of color
  • Height: 3-3½'
  • Width: 2'
  • Zones: 3-9
  • Exposure: Full Sun
More About 'Blue Paradise'
Nepeta faassenii 'Cat's Meow'
  • Tidy, dense habit that keeps its shape all season long
  • Well-branched stems carry long spikes of flowers, purple calyxes extend season of color
  • Height: 12-24"
  • Width: 10-14"
  • Zones: 3-8
  • Exposure: Full Sun
More About 'Cat's Meow'
Leucanthemum superbum Daisy May®
AMAZING DAISIES® Collection
  • Free flowering, heavy repeat blooms
  • Height: 12-24"
  • Width: 10-14"
  • Zones: 5-9
  • Exposure: Full Sun
More About Daisy May®
Perovskia atriplicifolia 'Denim 'n Lace'
  • Strong stems, stays compact
  • Upright, tidy habit
  • Height: 28-32"
  • Width: 34-38"
  • Zones: 4-9
  • Exposure: Full Sun
More About 'Denim 'n Lace'
Hemerocallis 'Going Bananas'
RAINBOW RHYTHM® Collection
  • Larger flowers and more continuous bloom compared to 'Stella de Oro'
  • Early, reblooming variety
  • Height: 19-22"
  • Width: 18-24"
  • Zones: 3-9
  • Exposure: Full Sun
More About 'Going Bananas'
Baptisia 'Lemon Meringue'
DECADENCE® Series
  • Very compact and carefree
  • Long flower spikes sit on top of the plant rather than within the plant
  • Height: 3'
  • Width: 3'
  • Zones: 4-9
  • Exposure: Full - Part Sun
More About 'Lemon Meringue'
Dianthus 'Paint the Town Fuchsia'
  • Much longer lived in the landscape than traditional varieties
  • Prolific bloomer
  • Height: 6-8"
  • Width: 12-14"
  • Zones: 4-9
  • Exposure: Full - Part Sun
More About 'Paint the Town Fuchsia'
Sedum 'Pure Joy'
ROCK 'N GROW® Collection
  • Perfectly rigid dome shape
  • Serrated blue-green foliage
  • Height: 10-12"
  • Width: 16-20"
  • Zones: 3-9
  • Exposure: Full Sun
More About 'Pure Joy'
Amsonia tabernaemontana 'Storm Cloud'
  • Near black stems, deep green foliage
  • Shrub-like polished habit
  • Height: 24-30"
  • Width: 38-42"
  • Zones: 4-9
  • Exposure: Full Sun
More About 'Storm Cloud'
Heliopsis helianthoides Tuscan Gold™
  • Compact and sturdy, excellent disease resistance, free flowering
  • Height: 24-32"
  • Width: 20-24"
  • Zones: 4-9
  • Exposure: Full Sun
More About Tuscan Gold™
Salvia nemorosa 'Violet Riot'
COLOR SPIRES® Collection
  • Concentrated show of vivid blooms, more consistent rebloom
  • Dense habit, upright stems
  • Height: 22"
  • Width: 20-24"
  • Zones: 3-8
  • Exposure: Full Sun
More About 'Violet Riot'

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