Answer: You will probably find that some of the old tried and true perennials are successful for you. For a sunny area, consider daffodils, creeping phlox, peonies, iris, purple cone flowers, daylilies (hemerocallis), black-eyed Susans, and the various types of veronica and salvia. For shady areas, consider the many lovely varieties of hosta along with astilbe and maidenhair ferns.
No matter which plants you select, do be sure to prepare the planting area by working in plenty of organic matter and provide a rich, moist yet well-drained (not soggy) soil for the best results. Your plants will also appreciate a year round layer of organic mulch and will need careful watering the first year until they are established. After that, you will still need to keep an eye on the water for best performance, especially during hot dry spells. The rule of thumb is an inch a week from either the gardener or the sky.
Enjoy your perennials!
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