Need a list of bullet proof plants
I am helping some relatives with their yard in the Chicago area. They are busy people but like flowers in their yard and are not really gardeners. I was trying to come up with a list of bullet proof plants to cover most of the growing season from March to Oct. The idea is to plant some flowers so that if flowers from month to month.
Being a crappy gardener, I have been able to notice what plants seems to grow and bloom despite all odds. Note they don't have to be native, though I would avoid invasive species.
Day Lilly (July)- probably the most perfect plants. Comes up every year. Some variety works in both shade and sun. Tons of blooms.
Iris (june) - not sure what type, but the ones in my yard is resistant to everything and grows in poor conditions.
Sedium (?) - Also comes up every year. The only way to kill it appears to drown it.
Hostas - good old standby. I am actually not fond of them so there are none in my yard, but it blooms in my neighbor's yard every year.
Lilly of the Valley - Grows everywhere where there is shade. Spreads like crazy.
Sweet Woodruff - grows underneath my tree and in my opinon looks a lot better than hostas. Have to trim it a bit to keep it from taking over.
Anyone have extension on this list. What about the following:
peonies (thought these were hard to grow though)
Bee Balms (red variety preferred)
I was also thinking of some late bloomers like Aster, and was wondering which variety is suited to Chicago area.