Answer: What an adventure! You might find that a few good books will be very helpful. Two I particularly like are "Perennials for Dummies" by Marcia Tatroe (ISBN 0-7645-5030-6) and "Rodale's Illustrated Encyclopedia of Perennials" by Ellen Phillips and C. Colston Burrell (ISBN 0-87596-570-9). Both of these books include good ideas for planning a garden as well as actual designs and plant profiles. The designs can be expanded or combined to fit any space. In addition to the suggestions found in the books, based on my experience I would strongly suggest that you make soil preparation your first priority because it is the foundation of a perennial garden. Keep in mind that it may be a good idea to start out small at first so that you can learn by trial and error about what does well in your location and about how much work and time it actually takes to maintain a perennial garden. It may surprise you!
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