Gardening Articles: Landscaping :: Trees, Shrubs, & Vines

Getting Started With Garden Perennials (page 2 of 2)

by National Gardening Association Editors

Five Steps to Success with Garden Perennials

  • Choose the right garden site. If you are creating a new bed, try to choose a site that gets partial to full sun. Although there are perennials that will withstand deep shade, you'll have a much larger selection of plants to choose from if the site receives some sun.
  • Choose the right plants. Evaluate your site, noting sun exposure and soil type, and choose plants based on these assessments. Make sure the plants you want are adapted to your growing region--check the USDA Zone rating.
  • Prepare the soil. Since your perennials will be occupying the same space for years, it's important to prepare the soil. Most perennials like a moderately rich, loose, loamy soil, with plenty of organic matter.
  • Plant properly. Follow the planting instructions that come with your new plants. Water plants well after planting.
  • Provide some extra TLC the first season. It's generally a good idea to mulch garden beds after planting with a thick layer of organic mulch. However, don't pile mulch right up agains plants--keep it a few inches from the base of the plants. Be diligent about watering the new plantings, if nature doesn't provide. A deep watering once a week is better than a daily sprinkle.
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