Annuals Vs Perennials - Knowledgebase Question

Schaumburg, IL
Question by MONICAKALAMA
January 22, 2001
I KNOW THAT THERE ARE 2 DIFFERENT CATAGORIES OF FLOWERS: ANNUALS AND PERENNIALS. ARE ANNUALS THE PLANTS THAT YOU HAVE TO PLANT NEW EVERY YEAR? OR THE ONES THAT YOU PLANT ONCE AND BLOOM (ON THEIR OWN) EVERY YEAR?

ALSO, WE JUST BOUGHT A NEW HOUSE AND I WOULD LIKE TO PLANT SOME FLOWERS THIS SPRING. I AM NEW AT GARDENING. CAN YOU RECOMMEND SOME FLOWERS THAT ARE EAIER TO BEGIN WITH? I LIVE NEAR CHICAGO, ILLINIOIS.

THANK YOU, I REALLY APPRECIATE YOUR HELP.

MONICA KALAMARIS


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Answer from NGA
January 22, 2001

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Annuals must be planted anew from seed each year. They grow, bloom, set seed and die in one season. Perennials grow for three or more years. Biennials will grow for one season, then bloom, set seed and die the second year.

Some easy flowers to start with would be annuals of almost all kinds; most perennials are not that difficult if suited to their location. For a sunny spot look at daylilies (hemerocallis) and for a shady spot, look at hostas. There are many named varieties of these plants to choose from! You might also enjoy purple coneflower, black-eyed Susan, and columbines.

Since you are new to gardening, you might want to take a look at a book or two about gardening. The Dummies series includes an excellent book on Perennials and another on Annuals. They are very straightforward and explain how to prepare your soil and select plants that should do well in your growing conditions.

Have fun with your new flowers!

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