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Transplanting Perennials - Planting Perennials

October 20th, 2011 Gardening

Growing Perennials From Seed

There are many perennials that you can grow easily from seed. The key to having success with perennial seed is to always obtain fresh seed. When you purchase seed, much of it is from hybrid perennials. This means that you may end up with unpredictable colors and growth habits. This is one reason that many gardeners prefer to start with plants. However, most gardeners who do start with seed are not rigid in their expectations and are very happy with their plants.

You can sow perennial seed in either the spring or fall. Many gardeners will sow their perennial seeds indoors and then transplant their seedlings into the garden. If you sow directly into the garden, make sure your soil drains well. The location of your flower bed should be in a location that will receive at least six to seven hours of good sunlight. Perennial seeds should be sown in rows and covered with either a small layer of vermiculite or soil.

How to Transition Indoor Perennials to the Garden

Before you take your indoor growing perennials outside to transplant them into the garden, you should prepare their new home. After you dig the holes, lightly water the holes and then place your perennials inside them. Next, fill up the holes halfway with water. Allow the water to drain out of the holes and then fill the holes with soil. Lightly firm up the soil around your perennials and then water the entire plant, leaves and all.

You should check on your newly transplanted perennials every day for at least 10 days. They will probably need watering. Some perennials may need watering two times a day, especially if the summer is very hot.

Invasive and Fast Spreading Perennial Plant List

What may be an invasive perennial plant to one person may be a dream plant for a gardener looking for a fast-spreading perennial. Here is a list of perennial plants that can spread rather fast and become invasive if they are not controlled:

  • Bamboo
  • Bugleweed
  • Chameleon Plant
  • Creeping Bellflower
  • Crown Vetch
  • Cypress Spurge
  • Daylily
  • Evening Primrose
  • Giant Reed
  • Goutweed
  • Hardy Ageratum
  • Horsetail
  • Ironweed
  • Knotweed
  • Lantana
  • Loosestrife
  • Mint
  • Obedient Plant
  • Ornamental Grass
  • Plume Poppy
  • Rose Campion
  • Tansy
  • Tovara
  • Western Mugwort
  • Yellow Iris

Listing of Perennial Plants With Attractive Foliage

There are countless numbers of perennial plants that have attractive foliage. These perennials run the gamut of color, texture, height and growing conditions. Here is a list of the top perennial plants based on their unique and beautiful foliage:

  • Bear’s Breech
  • Cardoon
  • Cheddar Pink
  • Coral Bells
  • False Indigo
  • Gold & Silver Mum
  • Hardy Ice Plant
  • Hen-and-chicks
  • Jerusalem Sage
  • Lady’s Mantle
  • Lamb’s Ear
  • Lavender Cotton
  • Lenten Rose
  • Lungwort
  • Ornamental Grasses
  • Plantain Lily
  • Prickly Pear
  • Silver Germander
  • Silver Horehound
  • Solomon’s Seal
  • Spotted Dead Nettle
  • Stonecrop
  • Variegated Sweet Iris

Mulching Perennial Plants

Plants love mulch if it is done properly. Mulching perennial plants helps to keep weeds at bay and it also helps to conserve moisture. Suitable mulch material for perennial plants includes grass clippings, shredded bark or straw. Many gardeners will apply a layer of winter mulch. If you opt to spread winter mulch, wait until after the first couple of freezes have passed. If you apply winter mulch too soon it can be bad for plants. Mulch insulates the soil and this can hinder plants from going dormant. Your plants could produce new growth which will be damaged by the cold.

Perennial Plant List For Hot, Dry Regions

Gardeners who live in hot and dry areas will have no problem finding perennial plants to grow. There are a number of perennials that thrive under the hot sun and dry soil conditions. Here is a list of the top perennials that will grow in hot and dry regions:

  • Artemesia
  • Blackberry Lily
  • Black-eyed Susan
  • Blanket Flower
  • Blue Fescue
  • Bluestem Grass
  • Butterfly Weed
  • Catmint
  • False Indigo
  • Gaura
  • Gayfeather
  • Hardy Century Plant
  • Hardy Ice Plant
  • Jerusalem Sage
  • Lantana
  • Lavender
  • Lily-of-the-Nile
  • Mexican Petunia
  • Pampas Grass
  • Prickly Pear Cactus
  • Russian Sage
  • Sea Lavender
  • Sundrops
  • Sunflower
  • Yarrow

Perennial Plants For Sandy Soil

The great thing about gardening is that there are plants that can grow in most any type of soil. Perennial plants that will grow and adapt to sandy soil include the following:

  • Blackberry Lily
  • Blanket Flower
  • Butterfly Weed
  • Daylily
  • False Red Yucca
  • Gaura
  • Golden Marguerite
  • Lantana
  • Plumbago
  • Purple Heart
  • Spurge
  • Texas Sage
  • Wild Indigo
  • Yarrow
  • Yucca

Perennial Plants That Love Damp Soil

Many people with moist or damp soil think they will never have a nice garden. The good news is that there are many plants that are tolerant to these growing conditions. Here is a list of perennial plants that can adapt to moist or damp soil:

  • Bee Balm
  • Blue Flag
  • Canna
  • Cardinal Flower
  • Confederate Rose
  • Elephant’s Ear
  • Forget-me-not
  • Golden Ray
  • Great Blue Lobelia
  • Japanese Iris
  • Joe-Pye Weed
  • Louisiana Iris
  • Meadow Sweet
  • New England Aster
  • Obedient Plant
  • Ostrich Fern
  • Primrose
  • Royal Fern
  • Sedge
  • Spiderwort
  • Swamp Sunflower
  • Sweet Flag
  • Sweet Woodruff
  • Texas Star
  • Turtlehead
  • Umbrella Sedge

Plant Perennials In Clumps or Groups

Most gardeners will plant their perennial plants in groups or clumps. A good rule of thumb is to plant perennials in odd numbers. For instance, if you are planting daylilies, plant three or five to a group. However, be sure that when you do plant in groups or clumps that you do not crowd your perennial plants. Take into account what their mature size will be and the room they will need over two or three growing seasons.

Shade Loving Perennial Plant List

There are many shade loving perennials that will thrive in a shade garden. Hostas and Spiderwort are two favorites. Here is a list of other shade loving perennials:

  • Barrenwort
  • Bear’s Breech
  • Bleeding Heart
  • Blue Star
  • Cardinal Flower
  • Cast Iron Plant
  • Columbine
  • Coral Bells
  • Creeping Woodland Phlox
  • Crested Iris
  • Ferns
  • Foam Flower
  • Forget-me-not
  • Foxglove
  • Golden Sedge
  • Great Blue Lobelia
  • Green and Gold
  • Hardy Begonia
  • Japanese Yellow Sage
  • Lady’s Mantle
  • Lenten Rose
  • Lily-of-the-Valley
  • Lungwort
  • Painted Arum
  • Plantain Lily
  • Primrose
  • Siberian Bugloss
  • Solomon’s Seal
  • Spotted Dead Nettle
  • Strawberry Begonia
  • Sweet Woodruff
  • Toad Lily
  • Turtlehead
  • Violet
  • Virginia Bluebells
  • Wake Robin
  • Wild Cranesbill
  • Wild Gingers
  • Wild Sweet William

Summer Guide to Transplanting Perennials

Generally speaking, summer is not the most ideal time to transplant your perennials. The heat can be hard on new transplants. However, if you have no other option, you can transplant perennials in the summer if you are extra careful with them. To keep your perennials from going into shock and dying, water the plants that you plan to transplant the day before you dig them up. Watering the day before will help to ensure that the plant is fully hydrated. The following day, wait until it is late in the evening before you dig the plant up. Water the plant right before you dig it up and then plant it immediately in its new spot. You should never dig up a perennial and then leave it exposed for hours before you transplant it.

Understanding Perennials

Plants are either perennials or annuals. Perennial plants are plants that will come back each year. Annuals only grow for one season. Most perennials will go through a dormant phase, or a time when they will die back. However, they will come back and grow again when their growing season begins. Many perennial plants will need to be divided because they will continue to grow and grow in size. Perennial plants are a good investment because you can get years of growth out of a single purchase. Many people divide their perennials and pass them down from generation to generation.

When to Divide Perennials

Most perennials should be divided after a few growing seasons. How do you know it's time to divide? Your perennials will start to form a ring around the area where they were first planted. If you do not divide your perennials they will start to die out in the centers. Dividing perennials will give your plants a longer, healthier life and you will also get more plants in the process. You do not have to wait until your perennials start forming a ring to divide them. Divide perennials when they are about three times larger than when you first planted them.