The best part of being in control of your garden is choosing plants that bring color and life at every stage of the growing season. Your garden can be a brilliant display all through the year, with carefully selected perennials that share their delightful blooms with us at different times. With a good cycle of your favorite perennial blooms, your garden can treat you and all of your favorite local pollinators and birds to something new and wonderful every month.
Perennials are the ideal choice in Carolina to offer reliable color and life that you can depend on year after year. Once you find your favorite perennial blooms, you’ll be delighted to see them shine in your garden with every growing season, instead of popular annuals that give you one spectacular year of color before needing to be replaced. Where annuals are perfect for experimenting and trying temporary new things, perennials are a dependable source of color and excitement for your garden— and they don’t skimp on style, either.
Your perennials often can’t bloom for the whole season, so staggering your choices to offer color that is in its prime at any time of the year is ideal. Mix in some spring, summer, and fall bloomers to have something lovely in your garden at all times. For a little consistency, and the ability to hang on to the blooms you fall in love with, planting some perennials in your garden with your other favorites is a great idea.
Spring is when we simply can’t wait to get into our garden, and we love celebrating the beginning of the season with some blooms that are early to rise. In the spring, you don’t have to worry about being too bold, as anything and everything you choose to grow will be a welcome start to the warmer weather.
Creeping Phlox is a familiar ground cover plant that we’ve seen sprouting with pretty blooms just about anywhere. During their spring bloom, the plant becomes a carpet of color with flowers packed in so densely that it can be hard to see the foliage below, but for the rest of the year you’ll still be able to enjoy the bright green and dainty leaves of this plant. Grow in full sun and enjoy all of the beautiful butterflies this plant brings to your garden.
Candytuft grows with adorable globe-like blooms that look just like its namesake! While it usually blooms in white, there are also cultivars that offer shades of lilac and pink. These masses of blooms are usually the first sign of spring in our gardens, and might even bloom in late winter in milder years! Plant them in full sun and with some great drainage for the best results and be sure to trim back after the flowers are spent for gorgeous results all year.
Baptisias are also known as Indigos, which is a perfect description for their bountiful delicate blooms. Sure to create a buzz in your garden in style and with your local bees, this perennial is perfect for decorating borders with their towering indigo spikes. While shades of indigo are the most traditional, there are lots of options to choose from like white, yellow, or purple. These are the perfect Carolina substitute for Lupines that don’t thrive as much in our climate.
Summer is about vibrant colors and so don’t hold back from choosing some bold colors when planting summer perennials.
“Black Adder” Hyssops are an eye-catching way to add color and texture to the garden, with their bountiful spikes of blooms. Use these giant Hyssops as a statement in borders or in containers. While we love these blooms for their style and look, we also love their popularity with local pollinators, bringing in gorgeous butterflies all summer. Not just a pretty face, these blooms are tougher than they look and are very tolerant of drought and heat, as well as pest resistant!
“Ragin’ Cajun” Ruellias are a red-hot plant that embraces the summer heat in your garden! Low-growing, these plants have bright red blooms that are sure to dress up your containers and beds for the summer. Tough and resistant to heat, drought, and pests, these are a surefire knockout in your garden that is ready to impress.
Hummingbird Plants are also known as Firecracker plants, or their less memorable name, Dicliptera suberecta, but are mostly known for their ability to attract hummingbirds to your garden. Native to Uruguay these plants can handle anything that our summers throw at them, from heat to humidity, or even drought. The long-lasting tubular blooms in shades of coral are not only super trendy this year, but are the key to attracting all of the hummingbirds in your neighborhood.
Fall rings the end of summer, and it is essential to have some color in your garden as the summer blooms fade away. While it’s the end of the hottest growing season of the year, it’s not the end of color and life for your garden with the right perennials in your beds and containers.
Mexican Bush Sage is the right way to cool things off in your garden for the end of the main growing season, with cool silvery foliage and delicate purple blooms around fluffy white centers. Not one to be shy though, these are a favorite with gardeners for their showiness in the fall season where their spikes can dominate a garden’s look. We love that they are hardy and easy to grow in full sun and popular with our local hummingbirds and pollinators - while discouraging pests.
“Fireworks” Goldenrod is the right way to cap off the growing season with an explosion of color. Native to North America, these flowers are sure to thrive in your garden without much help, thrilling you with their cheerful and electric yellow tones that are perfectly suited for fall. This plant thrives in full sun, so much that you’ll want to plant it far away from other plants that it might take over! We love that these colorful blooms offer lots of style and color without aggravating allergies.
Hot Lips Turtleheads offer a densely-packed aesthetic for your garden with snapdragon-like spikes or bright pink blooms that pop against dark foliage. Blooming in late summer to fall, this herbaceous plant is perfect in containers or beds, and is a perfect way to pick up the look of your sheltered and shaded areas of your yard.
Leopard Plants offer a unique look with their large leaves and yellow blooms that are the perfect way of highlighting the shaded parts of your yard. The name “Leopard plant” comes from the spotted leaves of some of the cultivars of this plant. These are perfect to grow in clusters in the garden where they can really draw the eye to what would have been secluded and shaded areas before.
We’re lucky that our neighborhood of the United States has mild enough winters that our gardens don’t have to stop for part of the year shivering away under snow like the Northern states have to. Instead, we get to celebrate the coolest season in our garden with perennials!
Hellebores are often called “Lenten Roses” for their blooming season that often overlaps with the observance of Lent and Easter! These perennials are worth the investment for their long-lasting blooms that decorate your garden from February through May with rich evergreen foliage. The blooms naturally face downward, so we like to plant these in an area where they won’t be overshadowed by other foliage or blooms.
Winter Honeysuckle is more of a shrub than a perennial, but we love it’s winter blooming habit anyways. The fragrant flowers make them popular with gardeners who don’t want to let go of that warmer-season garden feel even in the coldest days of winter. These plants are hardy and thrive on some neglect, requiring almost no care at all to decorate your yard.
Perennials are the perfect plant to insert a little bit of life and personality into your yard that won’t fade with the years. With this calendar, you’ll be able to plant something with a little bit of color and interest for every day of the year, making your garden a celebration of life, no matter the season.
There’s nothing better to announce the arrival of spring in your neighbourhood than the budding blooms on your spring flowering trees. They’re dedicated to creating bursts of color and fragrance early in the season that celebrate the beginning of the warmer season. From dainty and delicate whites to vibrant purple and magenta hues, spring blooming trees are a glamorous addition to your landscape that are sure to not only make you smile every year at blooming time, but impress everyone who has the pleasure of experiencing them. Here’s how to get some of our favorites into your home to enjoy for yourself:
Rising Sun Redbud
These trees are known for their iconic pink flowers - but also for a spectacular display of heart-shaped foliage. Color varies from bright green to peachy orange and is set against a beautiful tree to make for a stunning statement piece in your landscape from spring and all through the season.
Smaller in stature, the Rising Sun makes up for height in the formidable nature of their growing season, standing out among the rest of the trees in your landscape. Fortunately, for all their aesthetic punch, these trees aren’t divas to match, and will thrive in a range of soil conditions and levels of sun exposure, even being known to stand up to urban pollution.
Carolina Sweetheart Redbud
We can’t get enough of the redbuds because they are just such a fantastic variety of tree - and the Carolina Sweetheart is yet another favorite for spring blooming. They offer pink-purple flowers that add a charm to your yard in the spring, creating a romantic getaway in your own yard. Set against heart-shaped leaves edged in peachy tones and with blooms of pale and warm pink, there’s nothing to capture your heart of the eye of your sweetheart like this fabulous tree. It’s like something from a fairytale and can be found just outside your door.
Like other redbuds, the Carolina Sweetheart is a tough grower with a stomach for all sorts of conditions. Give it a good head start and fuel its romantic growth with some organic fertilizer, like compost, when you plant it.
A late-blooming tree for the spring, you can expect the white-pink, cup-shaped blooms of the “Betty” Magnolia in April and May. Fashionably late to the party compared to earlier-blooming magnolias, this tree is much less likely to be damaged by chilly spring weather. Some owners even report repeat blooms late in the summer when the weather begins to chill again. A stunning sight, you won’t miss a magnolia in your yard.
Plant in early spring, in a location that gives full or partial sun with well-draining soil. Despite their beautiful appearance, they’re actually quite tolerant of different conditions and can even tolerate urban pollution. Smaller and tough, but still bold and beautiful, these are a great choice for almost any landscape and home. There’s room for a magnolia in nearly every garden!
Thundercloud Purple Leaf Plum
With such a dramatic name, you know that this tree has to offer something special for your home. With enchanting pink blooms, the “Thundercloud” Purple Leaf Plum fills the air in your yard with a light and sweet fragrance that is followed by the unveiling of gorgeous leaves in shades of deep purple-red. With such gorgeous blooms and foliage in statement colors, this dense and large canopy tree is best as a centerpiece in large-scale landscapes.
Plant your Purple Leaf Plum in a sunny and bright area where it will have the sunshine to fuel its abundant blooms and leaves. While they are adaptable to all sorts of soil textures, you’ll have the healthiest and best looking tree with well-draining soil with some acidity. Water regularly, especially in the summer heat, to keep them looking their best.
This tree is perfect for when you aren’t quite sure if you want a small tree or large shrub - growing up to a modest 20 feet, they make for a compact addition to the yard. Their thrilling and fresh green foliage are set against delightful panicles of red, tubular flowers. Not only is this tree a great decorative addition to your home, but you’ll be delighted to see more hummingbirds in your yard as they can’t get enough of their long blooms growing in 4-10” bunches of bright red.
This tree is adaptable to a number of conditions, but will thrive in a spot that provides a little afternoon shade and sun exposure in the morning and evening - though it is surprisingly shade tolerant if that can’t be arranged. These trees offer a lot of visual impact with the contrast between blooms and leaves, giving a lot of statement for their comparatively diminutive and manageable size.
Chinese Fringe Tree
According to the NC State’s Urban Tree Evaluation Program, this tree is “very adaptable with few problems. One of the best small trees in the program,” We think this is a modest way to say that it packs a lot in for its size, offering delightful blossoms and intoxicating fragrance set against rich and leathery leaves - all without being too fussy about maintenance. They are related to our native fringe tree, helping them to simply thrive in our backyards.
We particularly like the Tokyo Towers cultivar, which has an upright growing habit that takes up minimal space while still offering the same fluffy blooms, making it perfect to fit into modern smaller yards.
Flowers are a pretty sign of spring that brings excitement about the season to come after a long and dreary winter. With the cool weather on its way out, warm up your garden with some cheerful, romantic, and gorgeous spring-blooming trees.
Carolina Seasons Nursery