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The Gardening Guru

David Daehnke
New Jersey
gardeningguru@juno.com

Perennials for Your Garden

Gardeners often seek that "perfect" herbaceous (non-woody) perennial plant to fill a special location or need in the landscape. Below are listed some perennial plants useful for special purposes based on Northern New Jersey growing conditions and experiences. Your experience with the plant may vary somewhat. Of course, this list is not “The Bible”, but includes plants that should perform well for you; use it as a guide and then plan some further research on your own.

Sometimes many plants in a genus will fit the category given and are listed as "Hosta spp.," for instance. Do more research to narrow your selection within the genus. Occasionally, a specific cultivar is listed (in single quotes), indicating that the particular plant is the best choice within the species. The Latin name and a common name are given for most listings. Remember, it is the preferred way to ask for a plant, since there can be several common names for one plant, or one common name for several plants. When you request your plant in Latin terminology, there is no ifs, ands, or buts what plant you are looking for.

Plants for Sunny, Dry Areas

· Achillea spp.-Achillea or Yarrow
· Anthemis tinctoria-Golden Marguerite
· Arabis caucasica-Rock Cress
· Armeria maritima-Common or Sea Thrift
· Artemisia spp.-Artemesia
· Asclepias tuberosa-Butterfly Weed
· Catananche caerulea-Cupid's Dart
· Coreopsis spp.-Coreopsis
· Echinops ritro-Small Globe Thistle
· Euphorbia spp.-Spurge
· Gaillardia spp.-Blanket Flower
· Helianthus x multiflorus-Perennial Sunflower
· Hemerocallis hybrids-Daylily
· Lavandula angustifolia-English Lavender
· Liatris spp.-Gayfeather
· Malva alcea-Hollyhock Mallow
· Oenothera spp.-Sundrops
· Opuntia humifusa-Prickly Pear Cactus
· Perovskia atriplicifolia-Russian Sage
· Polygonum cuspidatum var. compactum-Fleeceflower
· Rudbeckia spp.-Black-eyed Susan
· Sedum 'Autumn Joy'-Showy Stonecrop or Live-Forever
· Sempervivum tectorum-Hens & Chickens
· Stachys byzantina-Lamb's Ear
· Yucca filimentosa-Yucca

Plants for Moist to Wet Areas

· Aruncus dioicus-Goat's Beard
· Astilbe x arendsii-Astilbe
· Campanula glomerata-Clustered Bellflower
· Cimicifuga racemosa-Black Snakeroot
· Dicentra spp.-Bleeding Heart
· Houttuynia cordata 'Variegata'-Houttuynia
· Iris ensata-Japanese Iris
· Ligularia spp.-Ligularia
· Lobelia cardinalis-Cardinal Flower
· Matteuccia pensylvanica-Ostrich fern
· Physostegia virginiana-Obedient Plant
· Rodgersia pinnata-Featherleaf Rodgersflower
· Tradescantia x andersoniana-Virginia Spiderwort
· Trollis europaeus-Globeflower

Plants for Full Shade

· Ajuga reptans-Bugleweed
· Arum italicum 'Pictum'-Painted Arum
· Asarum spp.-Wild Gingers
· Convallaria majalis-Lily-of-the-Valley
· Dodecatheon media-Common Shooting Star
· Galium odoratum-Sweet Woodruff
· Helleborus orientalis-Lenten Rose
· Hosta spp.-Hosta
· Lamium maculatum-Spotted Deadnettle
· Liriope spicata-Creeping Lilyturf
· Mertensia virginica-Virginia Bluebells
· Osmunda regalis-Royal Fern
· Polygonatum biflorum-Small Solomon's Seal
· Polygonatum commutatum-Great Solomon's Seal
· Pulmonaria angustifolia-Blue Lungwort
· Pulmonaria saccharata-Bethlehem Sage
· Tiarella cordifolia-Foam Flower
· Tradescantia x andersoniana-Virginia Spiderwort
· Viola odorata-Sweet Violet

Plants for Partial Shade

· Alchemilla mollis-Lady's Mantle
· Anemone x hybrida-Japanese Anemone
· Aquilegia spp.-Columbine
· Astilbe spp.-Astilbe
· Bergenia cordifolia-Heartleaf Bergenia
· Brunnera macrophylla-Siberian Bugloss
· Ceratostigma plumbaginoides-Plumbago
· Dicentra spp.-Bleeding Heart
· Doronicum cordatum-Leopardsbane
· Geranium spp.-Cranesbill or Hardy Geranium
· Heuchera sanguinea-Coralbells
· Myosotis sylvatica-Garden Forget-me-not
· Tricyrtis hirta-Toadlily

Plants for Long Bloom Season

· Achillea 'Moonshine'-Moonshine Yarrow
· Asclepias tuberosa-Butterfly Weed
· Coreopsis lanceolata-Coreopsis
· Coreopsis verticillata 'Moonbeam'
· Dicentra eximia-Fringed Bleeding Heart
· Echinacea purpurea-Purple Coneflower
· Gaillardia x grandiflora-Blanket Flower
· Rudbeckia fulgida 'Goldsturm'-Black-eyed Susan
· Salvia x superba-Perennial Salvia
· Scabiosa spp.-Pincushion Flower
· Sedum 'Autumn Joy'-Showy Stonecrop or Live-Forever
· Veronica spicata 'Sunny Border Blue'-Spike Speedwell

Fragrant Flowers

· Arabis caucasica-Rock Cress
· Convallaria majalis-Lily-of-the-Valley
· Dianthus plumarius-Cottage Pinks
· Dictamnus albus-Gas Plant
· Hosta plantaginea-Fragrant Plantain Lily
· Iris hybrids-Iris
· Lavandula angustifolia-English Lavender
· Paeonia lactiflora-Peony
· Viola odorata-Sweet Violet

Flowers for Cutting

· Achillea spp.-Achillea or Yarrow
· Aconitum napellus-Garden Monkshood
· Alchemilla mollis-Lady's Mantle
· Anemone x hybrida-Japanese Anemone
· Aquilegia spp.-Columbine
· Armeria maritima-Common or Sea Thrift
· Astrantia major-Great Masterwort
· Campanula persicifolia-Peach-leaved Bellflower
· Chrysanthemum x superbum-Shasta Daisy
· Convallaria majalus-Lily-of-the-Valley
· Coreopsis spp.-Coreopsis
· Delphinium elatum-Delphinium or Larkspur
· Dicentra spp.-Bleeding Heart
· Echinacea purpurea-Purple Coneflower
· Echinops ritro-Small Globe Thistle
· Gaillardia spp.-Blanket Flower
· Gypsophilia paniculata-Baby's Breath
· Heliopsis helianthoides-Sunflower Heliopsis
· Heuchera sanguinea-Coralbells
· Lavandula angustifolia-English Lavender
· Liatris spp.-Gayfeather
· Lilium spp.-Hardy Lilies
· Lupinus 'Russell Hybrid'-Russel Hybrid Lupine
· Paeonia hybrids-Peony
· Penstemon spp.-Beardtongue
· Platycodon grandiflorus-Balloon Flower
· Rudbeckia spp.-Black-eyed Susan
· Scabiosa spp.-Pincushion Flower
· Stokesia laevis-Stokes Aster
· Veronica spicata-Spike Speedwell

Plants for Dried Flower or Fruit Use

· Achillea spp.-Achillea or Yarrow
· Alchemilla mollis-Lady's Mantle
· Asclepias tuberosa-Butterfly Weed
· Baptisia australis-False Indigo
· Catananche caerulea-Cupid's Dart
· Echinops ritro-Small Globe Thistle
· Gypsophilia paniculata-Baby's Breath
· Iris siberica-Siberian Iris (seed pod)
· Lavandula angustifolia-English Lavender
· Liatris spp.-Gayfeather
· Limonium latifolium-Statice
· Papaver orientale-Oriental Poppy (seed pod)
· Physalis alkekengi-Chinese Lanterns (seed pod)
· Scabiosa spp.-Pincushion Flower

Attractive to Butterflies

· Achillea spp.-Achillea or Yarrow
· Armeria maritima-Common or Sea Thrift
· Aruncus dioicus-Goat's Beard
· Asclepias tuberosa-Butterfly Weed
· Aubrieta deltoidea-False Rock Cress
· Chrysanthemum spp.-Mums
· Coreopsis spp.-Coreopsis
· Dictamnus albus-Gas Plant
· Echinacea purpurea-Purple Coneflower
· Gaillardia spp.-Blanket Flower
· Lavandula angustifolia-English Lavender
· Liatris spp.-Gayfeather
· Monarda didyma-Bee Balm
· Phlox paniculata-Summer Phlox
· Rudbeckia spp.-Black-Eyed Susan
· Sedum 'Autumn Joy'-Showy Stonecrop or Live-Forever

Attractive to Hummingbirds

· Alcea rosea-Hollyhock
· Aquilega spp.-Columbine
· Asclepias tuberosa-Butterfly Weed
· Dianthus spp.-Cottage Pinks
· Dicentra spp.-Bleeding Heart
· Digitalis spp.-Foxglove
· Hemerocallis spp.-Daylily
· Heuchera sanguinea-Coralbells
· Lobelia cardinalis-Cardinal Flower
· Monarda didyma-Bee Balm
· Penstemon spp.-Beardtongue

If you have any questions concerning perennials and their care, you can email me at gardeningguru@juno.com

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