Planting Purple Perennials - Knowledgebase Question

Name: Nigel Simon
Upper Marlboro, Ma
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Question by caribe_daddy
March 2, 2010
I am interested in planting some purple colored perennials in my garden. With full sun exposure, would perennials like alstroemerias, ambassador ornamental onions or lavender work in my climate zone? I live in Upper Marlboro, Maryland.


Answer from NGA
March 2, 2010
You are in gardening zone 6B. Ornamental onions, lavender and alstoremeria will all grow well in your region. Here are some of my favorite purple perennials:

Delphinium - There are many varieties of Delphinium. All of them are striking. Some have blue flowers, which are lovely, but they are better know for their purple blooms. They can get quite tall and look nice either alone or behind lower flowering perennials or annuals.

Salvia - Salvia is a plant of medium height. It's spikes of perennial flowers last for s few weeks. If you remove the spent flowers, it will cause more to come. Just pinch them off at the flower base or even a little further down.

Veronica - similar to Salvia. The flowers shapes are a little different, with elongated cones with soft tips. Veronica comes in not only purple, but also pink and white. This flowering perennial does not bloom quite as long as Salvia, but it is still a nice flowering plant.

Butterfly Bush - This drought tolerant perennial is extremely carefree, yet it is very rewarding. Its elongated purple flowers attracts butterflies, and it is one of those long blooming perennials. It comes in other flower colors too, such as pink and white. Use it where you need some height, as the smallest ones reach about four feet tall. It is definitely one of those hardy perennials.

Nepeta (Catmint) 'Walker's Low' - Catmint is a flowering perennial plant, which needs very little water. I like the variety 'Walker's Low'. This is a very low maintenance perennial which blooms for a long time. You can cut it back mid summer to rejuvenate it.

Pansy - Pansies are happy little flowers which are hard to resist in the early spring. They are some of the first flowers you will see at the nurseries and they are very colorful

Liatris - a showy plant which blooms in the middle of the summer. The color is a purple-pink and very bright.

Enjoy your garden!

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