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Perennial flowers return each year, often increasing in size and in the abundance of blooms. When several perennials with varying blooming times are planted in a flower bed, it creates a relatively carefree garden adding colour and interest throughout the summer. Many gardeners prefer to select perennials of varying sizes, shapes and colours to add visual interest and create depth in the flower bed.
Flower phlox image by Ivan chudakov from Fotolia.com
These old-fashioned flowers can be found near abandoned buildings or on old homesteads across much of America. Prized for their profuse blooms in midsummer and their highly fragrant blooms, phlox continues to be a favourite for country gardens. Reaching heights of 2 to 3 feet, these perennials spread slowly creating larger masses each year. Hardy in zones U.S. Department of Agriculture plant hardiness zones 4 to 8, garden phlox thrive in full sun to partial shade and prefers moist well-drained soil.
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Native to Europe, the globe thistle thrives in well-drained soil in a full sun or partially shaded areas. Although its bloom appears to be a sphere of colour, it is actually a cluster of tiny blue flowers. As attractive to bees as it is to humans, the globe thistle is abuzz with flying insects when in bloom. Used as cut flowers, or dried and used in crafts, globe thistle adds colour and movement to any garden.
goldenrod, sinus problems image by feisty from Fotolia.com
Goldenrod grows wild in ditches and along roadsides across much of rural America, but makes an attractive flower for the perennial bed as well. Often assumed to be the cause of fall allergies, goldenrod typically is not the culprit. According to North Carolina State University Extension, goldenrod blooms at the same time as the real culprit -- ragweed. Growing to heights of 6 feet or more, goldenrod is hardy in zones 2 to 8, prefers rich well-drained soil, and thrives in full sun.
Close-up focus on the petals of a gerbera daisy. image by ryasick from Fotolia.com
Gerbera daisies are particular in their needs and only survive as perennials in zone 8, according to NCSU Extension. Growing 12 to 18 inches tall, these daisies prefer full sun and well-drained soil and bloom in pink, orange, red and yellow. When used for cut flowers, gerbera daisies are long lasting and add cheerful colour to floral arrangements.
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