Posts Tagged ‘deer proof perennials’
Looking for an easy garden design idea that will add some impact to your perennial garden? I love using Festuca Boulder Blue for a number of reasons. This sun loving ornamental grass is easy to grow, looks great throughout the year and thrives in sun, high heat & humidity in well drained soil. Hardy from Zones 4-9. I believe it is one of of the best drought proof sun loving perennial groundcovers out there.
Add Color & Texture
Have some unpleasant spots in your garden? The handsome mound shape and narrow blue foliage make be just the ticket as it adds season long color & texture.
Break Up Competing Colors
If you have two strong competing colors that are just rubbing you the wrong way try planting a group of this soothing blue Festuca between them. Festuca is the ideal perennial to help break up strong competing colors in the garden
Small Space Gardening
Festuca grows 12”x12” so it tucks ever so nicely along narrow pathways, beneath shrubs or edging a perennial border.
Plant in Groups
If you really want to add impact, plant in groupings of 5 or more.
Some of the most beautiful gardens do a great job in repeating similar plants in adjacent areas. This frequently leads to a more harmonious flow in the garden.
Care & Growing Tips
- Add sand to heavier soils.
- Allow plants to dry out between watering.
- In the spring, use a sheers to prune away any dead foliage from winter
- Fertilize in the spring with Osmocote or a balanced granular fertilizer
Where to Buy Festuca Boulder Blue – www.GreatGardenPlants.com
Delosperma is a tough drought proof groundcover for hot, dry places like curbs and driveways. Hardy Ice Plant is low growing with green succulent foliage and stunning flowers that bloom non-stop all summer long while thriving in heat, humidity and little water.
Given the right spot and growing conditions, it will bloom most of the summer and thrive in your garden.
I hear a lot of feedback from gardeners that have difficult growing and/or overwintering Delosperma. This beautiful ground cover is very, VERY fussy about drainage. If you don’t have SUPER sharp drainage, you should probably opt for growing Sedum or SedumSod – an instant colorful groundcover.
If I were to grow in containers, I would add gravel or cactus to sharpen the drainage in the soil.
Delosperma is ideal for strips along a driveway (where it is often more gravelly) or rock garden. Right plant – right place as the saying goes.
CLICK HERE – for more information
A real dependable “tough it out” ground cover is Plumbago (Ceratostigma plumbaginoides). Yes it is a mouthful – but oh what an underutilized ground cover for sun to partly shaded areas (or those transitional areas) that is worth growing in your garden.
If you are looking for a moderate spreader that gives you light glossy foliage that looks nice and tidy throughout the growing season (and helps suppress the weeds) Plumbago is definitely a groundcover to consider looking charming beneath shrubs or as an edging plant.
I really like blue flowers which appear in mid summer just when you need a pop of color for the garden. You’ll get some nice fall color too when the foliage turns to a red coppery bronze color. Give it good drainage, and let it do its thing as it thrives on neglect.
Be patient in spring. Plumbago breaks dormancy later that most plants.
- Botanical: Ceratostigma plumbaginoides
- Common: Plumbago
- USDA – Zone 5-8
- Light: Full sun to part shade. Shade in hot afternoon.
- Size: 6-12 inches tall
- Spread: Moderate spread by rhizomes 1-2 feet wide
- Features: Tolerate clay, sand, drought, part shade, sun, deer,
- Uses: Undemanding groundcover
Remember the first perennial garden you personally designed? Mine was a rich riot of color with Daylilies and Rudbeckia. But it was boring – I had achieved a solder like lineup of plants with similar heights.
Add Highs to your Lows with Vertical Elements
So what now? I realized I needed some height along with different sizes and shape to gain balance and flow -so I added a few vertical plants namely Miscanthus and was really happy with the results.
Rhamnus Fine Line®
In the past few years, I discovered a wonderful vertical plant called Rhamnus Fine Line®
that combines the texture of an ornamental grass with Zone 3 hardiness. Rhamnus grows around 6 feet and the fact that it only gets around 24” wide – you have a perfect complement to any border in a sun to partly shaded site.
Unlike a Miscanthus, Fine Line® does not need to be pruned down to the ground every spring – it just flushes out with fresh new ferny like foliage which can be trimmed to any shape.
The soft ferny foliage is so lovely when planted in groups of 3 or more. It makes a terrific background plant and a medium sized Hedge Plant. Try it with Knock Out Roses, Buddleia Blue Chip, or other moderate size shrubs. It also makes a terrific container plant with season long interest Rhamnus is 98% sterile so it is noninvasive. Fall brings on a brilliant gold color.
This deer & drought proof deciduous shrub is a delightful medium sized vertical plant in almost any size garden.
Have you ever noticed how poorly some plants do beneath trees and tall shrubs? Tree roots can easily zap away moisture and nutrients leaving anything under planted looking weary & tired.
Rather than fight with it, select from a group of care-free plants that can take dry shade conditions and have minimal requirements when it comes to nutrients & moisture.
I particularly love Hellebores for this. When I planted seven of these early spring flowering ground covers last fall I thought I’m not sure if they are all going to make it. I dug pretty hard to get in between a few tree roots and there wasn’t a lot of soil for me to work with. I added some topsoil, mulched and watered well and to my amazement they all made it through next spring.
I do like planting spring flowering plants such as Hellebore in the fall. Plants still grow in the fall because soil temperature and moisture levels are usually at a level that promotes rapid root growth needed to sustain plants through the first critical year in the landscape. So by spring I’ll have larger more established plants and more blooms to enjoy that first year.
Hellebores is a terrific solution if you have dry shade in your perennial garden. In addition to the beautiful spring flowers, hellebore is the perfect deer resistant shade plant with evergreen foliage which provides year round interest.