Perennials should not be missing in your garden. This group of plants thrives long and during different periods in the year. This allows you to enjoy a flowering garden all year round, when you correctly care for them. If you take good care of your perennials, they will grow and flower optimally.
How to care for your perennials
- Spring: get support early in the season with tall perennials to prevent them from hanging over smaller plants or bending by the wind. In the spring (from the beginning of March) most perennials have to be 'cleaned up'. Cut off all dead stems and remove the dead leaves. Do not damage the new shoots. A hedge trimmer is an ideal tool for this. Evergreen perennials that still look good, can be left alone, but if they are ugly, you can also cut these species just above the ground. They automatically grow nicely and healthy again. If a plant does not do it in May, it is most likely dead and you can replace it.
- Summer: As long as perennials have sufficient water and nutrition, they will do well. If that is missing, they will soon show that. Water shortage can lead to a shorter flowering period and smaller plants. Food shortage leads to smaller flowers and the plants do not grow well. They are also more susceptible to damage.
- Autumn: perennials require considerable maintenance in the autumn. Cut off faded stems that are very unsightly, and protect those species that are not completely hardy. For example, lay a layer of conifer branches on the ground, close to the roots, or sprinkle potting soil between the plants. You must leave stalks and leaves of perennials as much as possible in the fall to prevent the frost from causing damage later on. Only where the dead mass of plants can stifle evergreens, you have to cut the plants short, but compensate for that by spreading potting soil around the roots.
- Winter: Foliage plants are an asset in the garden. Perennials make the garden green, even in the winter. For the winter, parts of perennials may, therefore, be removed. Often, this time of the year the stems are ugly and it is not nice to look at it the whole winter. Every year during the winter period, applying a layer of compost over the perennials is enough to allow them to grow and bloom for months from spring. A layer of an inch or three is sufficient.
Would you like to know more about our perennials? Please ask the staff in our Frosts Garden Centres for more information and advice. Our garden centres are located in Woburn Sands, Willington, Millets Farm and Brampton. We hope to see you soon!