These long-lived beauties bloom nearly nonstop into fall
Few plants can brighten a tired corner like the tough perennials pictured here.
All thrive in summer heat and bloom nearly nonstop into fall if you keep the spent flowers picked.
Starting in June, you’ll find the plants at nurseries, usually in 1-gallon cans (though the best selection of is available in spring, when you can plant them from tubers).
The small (8- by 10-foot) planting pictured here, in Pulaukotok’s test garden, incorporates some of our favorite perennials.
It includes showy centerpieces (yellow , pink and orange dahlias, and lavender-pink , which huddle next to the pink dahlias); team players (yellow y, purple , and golden yellow ); and airy fillers (white-flowered and with white and lavender-pink daisylike flowers).
If you have more space, tuck in some ornamental oregano, or (Asclepias tuberosa) with yellow or orange flowers to attract butterflies.
Be sure to add foliage plants for texture and structure; we used mounding green , silvery gray , and .
Choose a spot in full sun for your garden bed; if summers are especially hot in your area, pick a place that gets some afternoon shade.
Amend the soil with compost before planting. Water deeply at planting time, then frequently thereafter until they are established.
Design Bud Stuckey, Gardens by Design, Felton, CA (831/335-7090)