Tell us your favorite perennial

enjoyJuly 2, 2007

I feel like polling people today to ask those of you who have lots of experience in gardening.........

If you could choose only 1 sun loving perennial and 1 shade loving perennial to have in your garden, what would it be and why?

Mine are Black eyed susan because they are drought tolerant and bloom for a long period of time and bleeding heart because they are spectacular in deep shade, relatively early bloomers and bloom a long time.


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Shade loving is tough because I have so much shade, its a toss up between ferns, hosta and Soloman's I guess I would never give up my lily of the valley.
As for sun it would be roses, any kind of daisies any kind of daisies...arg too hard, LOL M

    Bookmark   July 2, 2007 at 12:57PM
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My favorite perennial for sun is 'Goldsturm' Rudbeckia, not only for the bright splash of color and long bloom period but because it never seems to be bothered by insects or disease. The next one is Phlox Panniculata, any one, they're great for fall color and butterflies seem to love them. My favorite perennial for shade is hosta, followed by fern and lamium. Not to easy to stick to just one. Marg

    Bookmark   July 2, 2007 at 8:21PM
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My favorite sun perennial is Lobelia, the coolest being L. siphilitica var siphilitica (closeup below). Penstemons are a close second.

My favorite shade perennials are Heuchera, especially 'Green Spice', 'Peach Flambe', 'Marmalade' and 'Licorice'. Hostas would be a close second.


Here is a link that might be useful: Our website

    Bookmark   July 3, 2007 at 6:33PM
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halaeva(z6 Toronto)

Shade loving perennial:Hosta because of beautiful foliage.
Sun loving perennial:Hardy Hibiscus'Rose Mallow' because of showy over 10" in diameter blooms.
I wouldn't mind waiting for them until mid of September.It blooms until frost.

    Bookmark   July 4, 2007 at 6:28PM
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You are asking a most difficult question. For me it changes as things bloom and from year to year. I will pick two for the reason that both reseed in our gardens and I simply can't throw any of the re-seeders in the compost pile.

For sun, the Black Eyed Susan. Tough plant which does bloom for a long period of time and which will occasionally give you surprises with different colouration and number of petals. Here's one which showed-up with double blooms last year.

For shade, it has to be the Astilbe. I have different kinds and they bloom starting mid-July and straight into the fall. When one starts fading, another comes into full bloom.

    Bookmark   July 6, 2007 at 8:03AM
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Crafty Gardener(ON 5b)

Tough question. The plant that is flowering at the moment tends to be a favourite. I love hostas for all the varying shades of greens and interesting patterns on the leaves. For sun I'll choose coreopsis, as they are a long bloomer and the more you deadhead the more they bloom. I just posted some photos of what is blooming now in my garden on my blog.

Here is a link that might be useful: In My Canadian Garden

    Bookmark   July 8, 2007 at 6:58AM
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aftermidnight Zone7b B.C. Canada

My favorite sun lover, michaelmas daisies, my favorite shade plant, ferns all kinds.


    Bookmark   July 8, 2007 at 11:03AM
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crafty, I love your boot and succulent display. I've seen it done many times over and always find it rather funny. You just gave me an idea in my garden. I need an 'icebreaker' in my neighborhood where people are a tad bit conservative and shy about making friends. I was hoping to a cottage garden/children's garden display would be good enough. I've got to find something really funky to use.

Anyway re the perennial of choice. I've got to say, that's quite difficult but if pressed, I;d say echinacea. As for shade gardening, heucheras.


    Bookmark   July 9, 2007 at 2:19PM
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Happy Gardening Everybody... My favorite sunny perennial is my Clematis,, and for the shade it is Lily of the Valley... they smell so beautiful.....

    Bookmark   July 9, 2007 at 9:07PM
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My favourite shade perennial is arisaema fargessi- an Asian jack in the pulpit because it is one of the most sinister of the cobra lilies with its deep purple, near black "flower" with the brilliant white stripings... did I mention the leaf that is nearly two adult hands wide?

Sun perennial- thats a tougher one, there are so many but I would have to say penstemon Mesa.... beautiful purplish to blue flowers on long upright stems to 15" in height

    Bookmark   July 11, 2007 at 7:52PM
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jannabeen(z5 US/z6 Canada)

Shade: Heuchera "Lime Rickey" because it really brightens up shade, the foliage always looks good from early spring to frost, it's well behaved (it doesn't need dividing and it's not invasive), and best of all the slugs leave it alone.

Sun: Lavender because it blooms a long time, makes a wonderful edging, and smells fantastic. Also, dried lavender and sachets are always welcome gifts.

    Bookmark   July 13, 2007 at 5:53PM
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bonniepunch(USDAz4 AgCanz5a)

Add another vote for Heucheras and Echinaceas. Tried and true pleasers! Of course my actual favourite changes from year to year. Right now I love love, love, love my Astilboides tabularis and Rodgersia for the shade and my new Sempervivums for the sun.

Astilboidse leaves:

Astilboides flower:

Rodgersia podophylla:

Semps in pots:


    Bookmark   July 16, 2007 at 5:37PM
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jannabeen(z5 US/z6 Canada)

Bonniepunch, I'm intrigued by your Rodgersia podophylla. I looked the plant up and the info. says it takes 2-3 years to settle in before it blooms. Is that true? Wherever did you get such an unusual plant?

Cheers, Jannabeen

    Bookmark   July 18, 2007 at 9:48AM
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bonniepunch(USDAz4 AgCanz5a)

jannabeen - I got it last spring at the garden sale at the Montreal Botanical Gardens (through these guys (French only)). It's a hard one to find at nurseries! If you have any local ones that have a large selection of shade plants, then they might have it.

Mine hasn't flowered yet, but it's only the second year I've had it. I'm hoping for a bloom next year, but even if it doesn't, I really won't mind - I got it for the foliage :-). I have another Rodgersia (R. pinnata 'Die Stolze' - you can see one of its much greener leaves next to the R. podophylla) that has orange-pink blooms, so I'm really hoping to see that one flower. I just got that one this spring though, and it's still small so it'll probably be at least another couple of years before that one sends up a flower.


    Bookmark   July 18, 2007 at 11:52AM
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