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What are some good perennials that flower all summer and do well in Utah?

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The following perennials are sure-fire, low-maintenance choices for the landscape. They look good, bring class to the landscape and are some of the tougher, more dependable plant choices.

Hummingbird fuchsia (Zauschneria). This plant is low-growing, can be trained to cascade over rocks and walls and has a bright red/orange flower that blooms from August until the first freeze. Like the name implies, it attracts hummingbirds as well as butterflies. It is not related to the prima donna fuchsia (as the name might suggest), but the flower is somewhat similar.

Bee Balm (Monarda). This perennial has a deep-red blossom that flowers about mid-summer. It attracts bees and butterflies and grows from one-and-one half to three feet tall. It spreads by rhizomes, and is a good choice for a background planting or for use in a less formal garden.

Hosta: For shady locations, hosta is a great choice. Hostas are grown for their unique color combinations and leaf shapes. Many varieties are available.

Coral Bells (Heuchera): This is another plant that is happiest in shady areas, and also has beautiful foliage. In addition, most send up attractive red to pink colored flowers in the spring. This native to the Intermountain area grows about 8 to 12 inches tall with flower spikes that can reach a height of nearly 18 inches.

Daylilies (Hemerocallis): Many people may have had a bad experience with the old-fashioned orange daylilies that used to crowd ditch banks and fields, but the newer varieties are interesting and attractive. Their color combinations and length of bloom have increased over the past few years, making daylilies one of the more delightful, prolific perennials for our area.

Gaura: This perennial grows between 2 to 3 feet tall and flowers from late May through the first frost. Its graceful stems are covered with small pink or white blossoms that are attractive in a background planting or can fill in empty spaces in a flowerbed.

Crocosmia: This perennial is related to the iris, so its foliage is quite similar. In July it produces beautiful, vivid red flowers that stand about 4 feet tall.

Posted on 5 Oct 2007

Jerry Goodspeed
County Director, Horticulture Agent, Weber County

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