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Perennials

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Overview

Perennials grow, flower, set seed, and die back to the ground each year. They can flower all summer if planted correctly and will not have to be replanted the next year like annual flowers.

Most perennials need to be thinned out every two to three years to keep them up and divide them, place half back in the hole and the rest in other places in your own yard, or share them with a friend.

Not all perennials can be divided. Each section must have a portion of both the root and crown to survive. A sharp knife used to cut the clump is preferable.

How to choose perennials

Sunburst Nursery carries an extensive variety of perennials to choose from. Perennials are usually grouped accordingly to different qualities.

Light Requirements needed to grow properly

Some perennials prefer full sun while others prefer partial to full shade. A Perennial that prefers partial shade is suitable for planting under trees or locations shaded by nearby buildings or walls.

When choosing your perennials to plant you must also consider your soil quality and the amount of moister they will receive. Some perennials prefer or tolerate moist or dry soil and need to be planted according to their individual requirements to grow properly. There are also other important considerations when choosing perennials, such as, mature size, texture, and blooming time.

Mature Size

Always make sure you read the label or research the varieties you wish to plant to determine how tall the plant will get and its ultimate spread. Plant lower varieties towards the front of your bed and the taller varieties toward the back to achieve a layered effect.

Texture

Some perennials complement each other depending on how coarse or fine textured the foliage. A coarse textured plant may not look good planted with other fine textured plants.

Blooming time

When choosing your perennials always know their peak blooming time. Depending on your preferences you can plant your perennials to flower at the same time or stagger the flowering times to give color throughout the summer.

Overall, perennials are a great way to keep cost and labor down!

Dividing Perennials

The easiest and least expensive way of increasing you supply of perennials is by division.

A single three year old existing plant can yield several new plants in one growing season. Early spring is the best time for novice gardeners to divide perennials due to favorable weather conditions. For more experienced gardeners you can divide perennials throughout the growing season. Most of your easy to grow perennials, such as, Daylily, Hosta, Yarrow, Coneflower, Coreopsis, Astilbe, etc. can also be divided in the fall (September to October) with great success.

Procedure

Spade a circle around the plant you plan on dividing approximately 4″ to 6″ away from the main roots. Loosen the soil under the plant so you can lift the entire plant out of the ground without tearing the roots. Study the roots and stems to look for natural divisions- clusters of stems that stand apart from the main plant on their own roots. The number of divisions you make depends on the size of the original plant and how big you want the newly divided plants to be. Depending on how dense or structured the root system is you can either tear them by hand or cut them with a knife or pruners. Transplant a new division as you would a small container grown plant. First, prune away dead or damaged stems or roots.

Loosen the soil where you intend to set the new plant and dig a hole wide enough to spread in the roots. Plant the division at the same depth the original plant was growing. Compact the soil around the division and water it in well. Regular watering is vital for newly transplanted divisions, their root system will suffer if the top few inches of soil dry out. Using Fertilome Root Stimulator will also help give the root system a good start and prevent any shock from the transplanting procedure.  For the first two to four weeks water the new plants anytime the soil surface dries out. For the rest of the season water at least once a week if adequate rainfall is not present.

Once you have experienced the ease of dividing perennials and healthy new plants to fill your garden, you will enjoy the money you save. Now you can use your money towards existing new varieties of perennials to add to your garden.

PERENNIALS that can be divided in SPRING OR FALL

Hosta                     Columbine          Echinacea

Daylily                    Cranesbill             Rudbeckia

Yarrow                   Monarda               Veronica

Astilbe                    Phlox                     Salvia

PERENNIALS that can be divided in FALL ONLY

Peony

PERENNIALS that can be divided in SPRING ONLY

Ornamental Grasses

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