Landscape Logic: Plush up your garden with color, texture of perennials
May 13, 2012
Want a garden full of color and texture that’s never boring? Then plant some perennials!
We’re still about 10 days away from the last date of frost, when it’s finally safe to get annual flowers and tender veggies in the ground. In early May, it is safe to plant perennial herbs and berries, along with hardy veggies. Plus, all of the flowering perennial plants we enjoy for their color and texture are also safe to plant now.
The combos you choose can make your garden flush with color and flavor not only for this year but for years to come. That’s a very sustainable planting concept!
One of the newest garden trends is to mix up the edibles among the other growables. Interspersing parsley and broccoli, for example, among perennial plants and the annual flowers you’ll be planting soon adds new interest in the garden. Especially for a yard that doesn’t have room for a separate vegetable garden, interspersing plants solves the problem of where to put the veggies.
When edibles are paired with companion plants such as nasturtium or marigolds, the combo is good for the garden because these flowers (plant them around Tuesday) help deter unwanted pests.
Perennial edibles and hardy veggies to plant in early May include:
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• Starter plants of lettuce (if you haven’t planted seed), broccoli, cabbage, kale and onions.
• Perennial herbs such as oregano, thyme, lavender and sage.
• Fruits such as strawberries, raspberries, blackberries and fruit trees.
Blast boring: Alternate colors
A perennial garden never stays the same. Already this spring, daffodils and tulips have come and gone and now iris are in bloom, soon to be followed by peonies and, later, daisies. While some perennials bloom for a longer duration and others are short-lived, the beauty in all of this change is that the landscape is never ho-hum.
Tips for planting perennials:
• Design your garden so that as one plant stops blooming, another one starts. With the plants you select, something should always be in bloom from early spring well into the fall.
• Look for the more drought-tolerant varieties that will thrive at Colorado’s altitude and your plant-hardiness zone. Your landscape pro or garden-center expert can guide you in the right direction.
• When planting, place plants in the yard according to their needs for sun/shade and group them by their water needs – low/medium/higher.
• Look for Plant Select varieties because these plants have been developed for Colorado’s growing conditions and some even thrive at very high altitudes.
Becky Garber is member of the Associated Landscape Contractors of Colorado, of which Neils Lunceford, a landscaping company, is a member. You may contact them at 970- 409-8945.