Files About Flowers

Flowers give a landscape color, zip, and a feeling that it is a special place. Flowers come in all sizes, shapes, colors, and textures. Some bloom a long time while others grace us with their beauty for just a few days or a week. Some flowers bloom in the spring, others in the summer, and even some in the fall. Annual flowers need to be planted every year; they don't come back year after year as do the perennials. Bulbs are not just for the spring as the summer bulbs can add major pizazz to any yard's look.

Remember, there is no such thing as an ugly flower garden. Some just look better than others.


How can I get colorful flowers all summer in shade?

Most perennials that grow in shade flower in spring when the shade is still not too heavy. For color from June onward, the choices are fewer. Some of the bleeding hearts, such as Dicentra eximia ‘Snowdrift’, ‘Burning Hearts’, ‘Candy Hearts’, and ‘Ivory Hearts’ will continue to produce flowers through the summer. Annuals such as Impatiens and Begonias are reliable stand-bys for flowers, and Coleus provide brightly patterned leaves until frost. Hostas with blue, green, or variegated foliage are the mainstay of most full shade gardens, while selections of Japanese Painted Fern (Athyrium niponicum pictum) and Japanese Forest Grass (Hakonechloa macra) bring silver and yellow foliage to shade. Astilbes will flower in early summer in part shade (four to six hours a day of direct sun).

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