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Perennial Plants in the Garden - Herbaceous Perennials

Perennials are one of the most versatile groups of plants that can be used in the garden. Other than the range of colours in many assorted types of flowers, many perennials can be grown just for their foliage effect.

Most of the Perennials used in the garden are hardy perennials - even if they die down each year. They will be back the following year - more robust and with more flowers! That is why they are known as 'Herbaceous Perennials'.

Perennials have the widest range of foliage effects, so suited to all types of garden situations. They are economic - lasting for many years - often for the price of a single bedding plant, such as a geranium - or even a petunia. 

Pink Penstemon flowersYou do not have to be put of with visions of huge perennial borders. Even the smallest of gardens can be home to a multitude of assorted perennial plants.  

 There are perennials for Sunny Positions - Dark Corners; Dry Banks - Boggy ground; Foliage features - Floral Display; Spring - Summer; Autumn - Winter; Tall Specimens - Low Ground Cover; Cut Flowers - Dried Flowers; Garden borders - Patio Containers. The lists simply go on and on. Such is the Versatility of Hardy Herbaceous Perennials.

Whilst there is nothing quite like the majestic swathe of colours and form to be seen in many of the large herbaceous perennial borders of large gardens and stately homes, there is absolutely no reason why perennials should not form the basis of successful and colourful gardening. Mix perennials with shrubs, add a few bedding plants and bulb and you have the gardening utopia - so often sought , but rarely realised - colour and interest for twelve months of the year!

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All manner of of plants are used these days in 'mixed borders' - including shrubs, bulbous plants, herbaceous perennials, and even some of the tender exotic plants. The shrubs, bulbous plants and the perennials will give interest and satisfaction for years.

Historically, gardens were almost always 'perennial' with no access to the wide range of bedding plants now available. Perennials include bulbs and shrubs, but there are dedicated areas of the website to deal with those plants.

Euphorbia Main Page

Versatility of Herbaceous Perennials.

  • The versatility of herbaceous perennials is soon appreciated when trying to draw up a list of plants for given situations. Problem situations even!

We hope to have one of the largest and most informative databases of perennial plants for the uk, and have started working to that end.

The writer has first hand working knowledge of many perennials, together with which he has spent many hours (years?) of his life photographing them. His photos have been and still are being used in newspapers, magazines, books and scientific tracts.

Perennial Rockery Plants - Alpines.

  • The rockery starts to become a rock garden with the planting of rock plants - almost all of which will be hardy perennials. These will range from the ubiquitous Aubrietia and Golden Alyssum, to the more choice rock garden plants which are the true 'Alpines'.

Perennial Herbs

  • Many of the plants found in the traditional - or modern - herb garden are also perennials - some are evergreen perennials, such as the Thymes and Sages. Others happily partaking in the herbaceous habit of growth, and therefore dying down each winter - to re-appear the following year. Mint and Fennel fall into this category - as does Angelica.


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