Achillea, Yarrow

Common Name: Yarrow
Zone: 3 to 8
Plant Type: Herbaceous perennial
Height: 1 to 2 feet
Spread: 0.75 to 1 foot
Bloom Time: June - September
Bloom Color: Bright yellow
Sun: Full sun
Water: Dry to medium
Maintenance: Medium

'Moonshine' is an upright, clump-forming, compact hybrid yarrow which is noted for its fern-like, aromatic, silvery to gray-green foliage and its, long-lasting, bright lemon-yellow flowers which appear in dense, flattened clumps (to 2-3" across) throughout the summer on stiff, erect stems typically rising 1-2' tall.

Ajuga Reptans, Bugleweed

Common Name: Bugleweed
Zone: 3 to 10
Plant Type: Herbaceous perennial
Height: 0.5 to 0.75 feet
Spread: 0.5 to 1 foot
Bloom Time: May - June
Bloom Color: Blue
Sun: Full sun to part shade
Water: Medium
Maintenance: Low

Bronze Bugleweed is a dense, rapidly spreading, mat-forming ground cover which features bronzy-purple leaves. Whorls of tiny, blue-violet flowers appear in mid to late spring on spikes rising above the foliage to 10". Ajuga 'Black Scallop' has very glossy, ruffled dark burgundy foliage that is complimented by light-blue flowers spikes.

Alchemilla Mollis, Lady's Mantle

Common Name: Lady's mantle
Zone: 3 to 8
Plant Type: Herbaceous perennial
Height: 1 to 1.5 feet
Spread: 1.5 to 2.5 feet
Bloom Time: June
Bloom Color: Chartreuse
Sun: Full sun to part shade
Water: Medium
Maintenance: Medium

Lady's Mantle is a clump-forming perennial which typically forms a foliage mound (6-12" tall ) of scallop-edged, soft-hairy, light green leaves (to 6" across) each with 9-11 shallow rounded lobes. Tiny, star-shaped, greenish yellow flowers appear in loose, spreading clusters atop stems rising above the foliage to 12-18" in late spring to early summer.

Tendency of leaves to retain moisture beads after a rain is considered to be a unique and attractive ornamental feature.

Aquilegia, Columbine

Common Name: Columbine
Zone: 3 to 9
Plant Type: Herbaceous perennial
Height: 2 to 2.5 feet
Spread: 1 to 1.5 feet
Bloom Time: April - May
Bloom Color: White, red, yellow, blue, pink, purple, bicolors
Sun: Full sun to part shade
Water: Medium
Maintenance: Medium

The McKana Group is a tall columbine which features a wide selection of large, long-spurred, nodding, bi-colored flowers in shades of blue/white, red/yellow and various other color combinations involving pinks and purples. It is a clump-forming perennial which typically grows to 30" tall with a fern-like, gray-green foliage. Blooms in spring.

Artemisia Schmidtiana, Wormwood

Common Name: Wormwood
Zone: 4 to 9
Plant Type: Herbaceous perennial
Height: 1 to 1.5 feet
Spread: 2 to 3 feet
Bloom Time: August - September
Bloom Color: Yellowish-gray
Sun: Full sun
Water: Dry to medium
Maintenance: Medium

Artemisia 'Silver Mound' has lance-shaped leaves (to 4” long) that are silver-white It is a mounding perennial that is grown for its attractive foliage that adds texture and contrast to gardens. The tiny, somewhat inconspicuous, yellowish-gray flower heads have little ornamental value. . Foliage is aromatic when bruised.

Asclepias Tuberosa, Butterfly Weed

Common Name: Butterfly Weed
Zone: 3 to 9
Plant Type: Perennial
Height: 1 to 1.5 feet
Spread: 1 to 2.5 feet
Bloom Time: June - August
Bloom Color: Yellowish/orange
Sun: Full sun
Water: Dry to medium
Maintenance: Medium

Butterfly Weed is a tuberous rooted perennial which grows in dry/rocky open woods, prairies, fields and roadsides. It typically grows in a clump to 1-3” tall and features clusters of bright orange to yellow-orange flowers atop upright to reclining, hairy stems with narrow, lance-shaped leaves. Unlike many of the other milkweeds, this species does not have milky-sapped stems. Flowers give way to prominent, spindle-shaped seed pods (3-6” long) which split open when ripe releasing numerous silky-tailed seeds for dispersal by the wind. Seed pods are valued in dried flower arrangements. Long bloom period from late spring throughout the summer. Flowers are a nectar source for many butterflies and leaves are a food source for monarch butterfly larvae (caterpillars).

Aster Novae-angliae, New England Aster

Common Name: New England Aster
Zone: 5 to 8
Plant Type: Herbaceous perennial
Height: 1.5 to 2 feet
Spread: 2 to 3 feet
Bloom Time: August - September
Bloom Color: Royal purple
Sun: Full sun
Water: Medium
Maintenance: Low

New England Aster typically grows 18-24" tall and up to 3' wide with a low, bushy habit. Features a bloom of dark purple flowers (to 1.5" across) which can entirely cover the plant with bloom from mid-August until early October. Attractive to butterflies.

Aster Dumosus, New York Aster

Common Name: New York Aster
Zone: 4 to 8
Plant Type: Herbaceous perennial
Height: 1 to 1.5 feet
Spread: 1 to 1.5 feet
Bloom Time: August - September
Bloom Color: Pink, purple
Sun: Full sun
Water: Medium
Maintenance: Low

‘Wood’s Pink' and 'Wood's Purple’ are both a compact Aster form that is similar to Aster novae-angliae in appearance, but are noted for having much better disease resistance. It typically grows in a mounded clump to 12-18” tall. Small, semi-double, purple or pink flowers (to 1/2” across) with yellow centers bloom in late summer to early fall. Glossy dark green leaves have excellent disease resistance.

Aster Oblongifolius, Aromatic Aster

Common Name: Aromatic Aster
Zone: 3 to 8
Plant Type: Herbaceous perennial
Height: 1.5 to 2 feet
Spread: 1.5 to 2 feet
Bloom Time: August - October
Bloom Color: Dark sky blue
Sun: Full sun
Water: Dry to medium
Maintenance: Medium

‘October Skies’ is a low, slowly spreading aster with aromatic foliage that stays compact and features attractive deep sky blue flowers. Stems typically grow to 18” tall and hold small, daisy-like flowers (to 1” across) with blue to blue-purple rays and yellow center disks. Oblong, dark green leaves (to 3” long) are fragrant when crushed. Flowers are attractive to butterflies and insects. Sky color in October is reportedly a darker blue than at other times of the year, hence the name for this plant.

Astilbe, False Spirea

Common Name: False Spirea
Zone: 4 to 8
Plant Type: Herbaceous perennial
Height: 1 to 1.5 feet
Spread: 1 to 1.5 feet
Bloom Time: May
Bloom Color: Pink, white, red
Sun: Part shade to full shade
Water: Medium
Maintenance: Low

Astilbes are mainstays of shade and woodland gardens. They are clump-forming perennials which feature graceful, fern-like mounds of 2-3 compound leaves, usually with sharply-toothed leaflets, and tiny flowers densely packed into erect to arching, plume-like flowers rising above the foliage on slender, upright stems. Astilbes are slowly spreading plants which bloom with elliptic-oval, 3- leaflets.

Buddleia Davidii, Butterfly Bush

Common Name: Butterfly Bush
Zone: 5 to 9
Plant Type: Deciduous shrub
Height: 6 to 8 feet
Spread: 3 to 5 feet
Bloom Time: June - September
Bloom Color: Very dark purple, pink, white
Sun: Full sun
Water: Medium
Maintenance: Low

'Black Knight' is a butterfly bush which features dark purple flowers. 'Pink Delight' has large pink flower spikes; 'White Profusion', as the name indicates has white blooms. It is a shrub with an arching, spreading habit which typically grows 6-8' tall. Features spike-like 4-10" long terminal clusters of flowers which bloom from June to September and sometimes to first frost. Flowers are fragrant, and, as the common name suggests, very attractive to butterflies.

Cerastium Tomentosum, Snow in Summer

Common Name: Snow-in-Summer
Zone: 3 to 7
Plant Type: Herbaceous perennial
Height: 0.5 to 1 foot
Spread: 0.75 to 1 foot
Bloom Time: June
Bloom Color: White
Sun: Full sun
Water: Dry
Maintenance: Medium

Snow-in-Summer is a low-growing, mat-forming perennial which is typically massed in sunny locations as a ground cover. Tufts of narrow, silver-gray leaves form a 6" tall foliage mat. In late spring, flower stems rise above the foliage mat (typically to 8-12") carrying clusters of white blooms which form a snow-like carpet. Flowers (to 1" diameter) have 5 notched petal.

Ceratostigma, Plumbago

Common Name: Plumbago
Zone: 5 to 9
Plant Type: Herbaceous perennial
Height: 0.50 to 1 foot
Spread: 1 to 1.5 feet
Bloom Time: July - September
Bloom Color: Deep blue
Sun: Full sun to part shade
Water: Medium
Maintenance: Low

Plumbago is a wiry, mat-forming perennial which spreads to form an attractive ground cover. Typically grows 6-10" tall on generally erect stems rising from the rhizomes. Oval, shiny, medium green leaves (to 2" long) turn bronze-red in autumn. Clusters of 5-petaled, blue flowers (1/2 to 3/4" diameter) appear above the foliage over a long summer to frost bloom period.

Coreopsis, Tickseed

Common Name: Tickseed
Zone: 4 to 9
Plant Type: Herbaceous perennial
Height: 1.5 to 2 feet
Spread: 1.5 to 2 feet
Bloom Time: May - August
Bloom Color: Yellow
Sun: Full sun
Water: Dry to medium
Maintenance: Low

'Early Sunrise' is a compact coreopsis which features solitary, yellow, semi-double flowers (to 2" diameter) with yellow rays and darker yellow center disks atop slender, erect stems rising to 18" tall.

'Moonbeam’ is a threadleaf-type of coreopsis that typically grows to 18-25” tall and has pale yellow flowers which bloom all summer. 'Zagreb is more compact than 'Moonbeam' with bright golden flowers.

'Sweet Dreams' coreopsis has large raspberry and white bicolor flowers from spring to frost. The 18" foliage is similiar to the species and drought tolerant when established.

‘Tequila Sunrise’ is a compact coreopsis that is noted for its yellow and green variegated leaves. Yellow flowers (to 1.5” diameter) with red centers appear singly atop erect, slender stems rising above the foliage to 16” tall.

Flowers typically bloom from late spring to late summer and sometimes well into fall, though bloom period can be much shorter if spent flowers are not regularly deadheaded. Coreopsis are sometimes commonly called tickseed in reference to the resemblance of the seeds to ticks.

Dianthus Allwoodii, Pinks

Common Name: Pinks
Zone: 3 to 9
Plant Type: Herbaceous perennial
Height: 0.5 to 1 foot
Spread: 0.5 to 1 foot
Bloom Time: May - July
Bloom Color: Red
Sun: Full sun
Water: Medium
Maintenance: Low

This dianthus produces numerous, fringed and fragrant 1" diameter red flowers singly atop wiry stems (to 10" tall) arising from mounds of icy, blue-green, evergreen foliage. Blooms in late spring with some intermittent repeat bloom in summer.

Dianthus Gratianopolitanus, Cheddar Pinks

Common Name: Cheddar Pinks
Zone: 3 to 8
Plant Type: Herbaceous perennial
Height: 0.25 to 0.5 feet
Spread: 0.5 to 1 foot
Bloom Time: May - June
Bloom Color: Bright magenta
Sun: Full sun
Water: Medium
Maintenance: Low

'Bath's Pink' dianthus has compact gray-green leafy mounded foliage with prolific pink flowers in late Spring. 'Firewitch' has brilliant magenta, fragrant blooms atop silvery-blue evergreen foliage. 'Tiny Rubies' has double deep pink blooms which appear in masses above dense, globe-shaped mounds of deep green, evergreen foliage.

Echinacea Purpurea, Coneflower

Common Name: Purple Coneflower
Zone: 3 to 8
Plant Type: Herbaceous perennial
Height: 2 to 3 feet
Spread: 1.5 to 2 feet
Bloom Time: June - August
Bloom Color: Rosy-pink, purple, white
Sun: Full sun to part shade
Water: Dry to medium
Maintenance: Low

Purple coneflower is a plant which loves to grow in rocky open woods and prairies throughout the Midwest. Large, daisy-like flowers have slightly drooping, petals and large, coppery-orange central cones.

The flowers of 'Bright Star' are rosy pink; 'Magnus' is similar with purple blooms, and 'White Swan' sports fragrant white flowers that attract butterflies. Best flower display is late June to late July, with sporadic continued bloom into autumn. Flowers grow on rigid stems typically to 3' tall.

Euonymus Fortunei, Wintercreeper

Common Name: Wintercreeper
Zone: 4 to 9
Plant Type: Herbaceous perennial
Height: 0.75 to 1.5 feet
Spread: 1 to 3 feet
Bloom Time: April
Bloom Color: Greenish white
Sun: Full sun to part shade
Water: Medium
Maintenance: Medium

Euonymus fortunei 'Coloratus' is a dense, woody-stemmed, broadleaf evergreen plant grown primarily as a trailing ground cover which typically spreads indefinitely by rooting stems. It features lustrous, elliptic, dark green leaves (1-2" long) which turn dark purple in fall and winter. Inconspicuous, greenish-white flowers may appear in June. If allowed to climb a wall, tree or other structure, this plant assumes more vine-like characteristics and is more likely to produce flowers.

Eupatorium Maculatum, Joe-Pye Weed

Common Name: Joe-Pye Weed
Zone: 4 to 8
Plant Type: Herbaceous perennial
Height: 5 to 6 feet
Spread: 2 to 3 feet
Bloom Time: July - September
Bloom Color: Pink
Sun: Full sun
Water: Medium to wet
Maintenance: Low

Joe Pye Weed is a native plant which grows to 6' tall and prefers moist soil in full sun. Butterflies love the whorls of textured foliage crowned with clusters of bronze pink flowers in late summer.

Onoclea Sensibilis, Sensitive Fern

Common Name: Sensitive Fern
Zone: 4 to 8
Plant Type: Fern
Height: 3 to 4 feet
Spread: 3 to 4 feet
Bloom Time: Non-flowering
Bloom Color: Non-flowering
Sun: Part shade to full shade
Water: Medium to wet
Maintenance: Medium

Sensitive fern is a large, somewhat coarse fern found in wet woods and thickets and in moist soils along streams and springs. Grows up to 4' tall. Features long-stalked, bright green fern-like leaves (2-4' long) with leathery, triangular leaflets which have distinctively netted veins. Commonly called sensitive fern because the are sensitive to the first fall frost. Also sensitive to drought.

Osmunda Cinnamomea, Cinnamon Fern

Common Name: Cinnamon Fern
Zone: 3 to 9
Plant Type: Fern
Height: 2 to 3 feet
Spread: 2 to 3 feet
Bloom Time: Non-flowering
Bloom Color: Non-flowering
Sun: Part shade to full shade
Water: Medium to wet
Maintenance: Low

Cinnamon Fern is a fern which occurs in moist, boggy ground along streams and on shaded ledges and bluffs. Typically grows in clumps to 2-3' tall. Separate spore-bearing, stiff, fertile fronds appear in early spring, quickly turning brown. The familiar "fiddleheads" also emerge from the base of the plant and unfurl into large, erect, yellowish-green, sterile fronds (2-4' long) which remain attractive throughout the summer and turn yellow in autumn. The common name of this plant is in reference to the cinnamon colored fibers found near the frond bases.

Gaillardia Grandiflora, Blanket Flower

Common Name: Blanket Flower
Zone: 3 to 10
Plant Type: Herbaceous perennial
Height: 1 foot
Spread: 1 to 2 feet
Bloom Time: June - September
Bloom Color: Red and yellow bicolor
Sun: Full sun
Water: Dry to medium
Maintenance: Low

Gaillardia will bloom all summer until frost even without deadheading. 'Goblin' is an old time favorite with red and yellow bicolor flowers surrounding a reddish-brown button like center.

Galium Odoratum, Sweet Woodruff

Common Name: Sweet Woodruff
Zone: 4 to 8
Plant Type: Herbaceous perennial
Height: 0.5 to 1 foot
Spread: 0.75 to 1.5 feet
Bloom Time: April - May
Bloom Color: White
Sun: Part shade to full shade
Water: Medium to wet
Maintenance: Low

Sweet woodruff is a mat-forming perennial that is most often grown as a ground cover in shady areas. Plants typically grow 8-12" tall and feature fragrant, lance-shaped, dark green leaves in whorls of 6-8 along square stems. Small, fragrant, 4-petaled, white flowers appear in loose cymes in spring. Aromatic intensity of the foliage increases when dried, thus dried leaves are popularly used in sachets or potpourris. Plants have also been used commercially in perfumes. Leaves are sometimes used to flavor teas and cold fruit drinks. Leaves are also used to make May wine, a punch made from white wine flavored with woodruff, orange and pineapple.

Geranium Cantabrigiense, Hardy Geranium

Common Name: Hardy Geranium
Zone: 5 to 8
Plant Type: Herbaceous perennial
Height: 0.5 to 1 foot
Spread: 0.5 to 1 foot
Bloom Time: May - June
Bloom Color: White tinged with pink and pink stamens
Sun: Full sun to part shade
Water: Medium
Maintenance: Low

This hybrid geranium is a spreading plant typically growing 6-10" high. Features masses of 5-petaled white flowers (3/4" diameter) which are tinged with pink at the base of each petal. The overall flower effect is that of a very pale pink geranium. Blooms in late spring. Rounded, lobed, medium green foliage.

Geranium Hybrida, Hardy Geranium

Common Name: Hardy Geranium
Zone: 4 to 8
Plant Type: Herbaceous perennial
Height: 1 to 1.5 feet
Spread: 2 to 2.5 feet
Bloom Time: June - September
Bloom Color: Lavender-blue
Sun: Full sun to part shade
Water: Medium
Maintenance: Low

‘Johnson’s Blue’ is one of the most popular blue-flowered geraniums. It first appeared in English gardens in the 1950s. It is a hardy perennial that typically grows in a dense spreading mound to 12-18” tall and to 24-30” wide. Large, saucer-shaped, sky blue flowers (to 2” diameter) bloom in clusters above the foliage from late spring to early fall. Deeply cut dark green foliage.

Geranium Hybrida, Hardy Geranium

Common Name: Hardy Geranium
Zone: 4 to 8
Plant Type: Herbaceous perennial
Height: 1 to 1.5 feet
Spread: 2 to 2.5 feet
Bloom Time: June - September
Bloom Color: Blue
Sun: Full sun to part shade
Water: Medium
Maintenance: Low

‘Max Frei’ is a hardy geranium that is noted for its compact growth habit. It features 5-petaled, reddish-purple flowers and deeply-lobed, dark green leaves. Primarily blooms in May and June with a sparser rebloom occurring throughout the summer. Foliage often turns attractive shades of red in autumn.

Geranium Hybrida, Hardy Geranium

Common Name: Hardy Geranium
Zone: 4 to 8
Plant Type: Herbaceous perennial
Height: 1 to 1.5 feet
Spread: 2 to 2.5 feet
Bloom Time: June - September
Bloom Color: Blue
Sun: Full sun to part shade
Water: Medium
Maintenance: Low

‘Rozanne’ is a patented hybrid clump-forming geranium that typically grows in a mound to 20” tall by 24” wide. It is noted for its almost non-stop flowering throughout the growing season. Large, 5-petaled, violet-blue flowers (to 2.5” diameter) with purple-violet veins and small white centers bloom profusely from late spring to early summer. Deeply cut, slightly marbled, deep green foliage.

Hedera Helix, Ivy

Common Name: English Ivy
Zone: 4 to 9
Plant Type: Ground Cover or Vine
Height: 20 to 80 feet
Spread: 3 to 50 feet
Bloom Time: September - October
Bloom Color: Greenish white
Sun: Part shade to full shade
Water: Medium
Maintenance: Low

English ivy is a vigorous, fast-growing, evergreen, woody perennial that is primarily grown as a climbing vine or trailing ground cover. Leaves are a deep green with a pronounced central lobe and creamy white veins. 'Thorndale Ivy' has a mid-sized leaf which becomes reddish in winter.

Hemerocallis, Daylily

Common Name: Daylily
Zone: 3 to 9
Plant Type: Herbaceous perennial
Height: 2.5 to 3 feet
Spread: 1.5 to 2.5 feet
Bloom Time: June - August
Bloom Color: Various
Sun: Full sun to part shade
Water: Medium
Maintenance: Low

'Chicago Apache' has scarlet red, ruffled 5" flowers with a green throat in mid to late season. Scapes can reach 30".

'Going Bananas' is an improved 'Happy Return' that is so good it is patented. Nearly continuous blooms from early spring until frost. Bright lemon yellow blooms are 4" and open just above the foliage. Grows to 19".

'Hyperion' is a very fragrant daylily with lemon yellow blooms on very tall flower scapes. Blooms mid season.

'Little Grapette' is a miniature with a high bud count. It has light purple tepals with a darker band and fluorescent throat.

'Majestic Mix' consists of a variety of plants produced by a local daylily grower.

'Mary Todd' has very large, pastel yellow flowers. Tepals are lightly ruffled and of heavy substance. Very dependable rebloomer that reaches 26" tall.

'Rocket City' has big and beautiful bittersweet orange blooms with a burnt orange eyezone. Throat and midribs are both a lighter orange and the petals have crimped edges. Blooms are 6" on 36" tall scapes.

‘Stella de Oro‘ is a very popular reblooming daylily. It has bright gold 2.5" blooms on 12-18" scapes.

'Strawberry Candy' has large ruffled pink petals with a raspberry red eye and green throat. It is long blooming with 26" scapes.

'Tawny' is a tall common orange blooming daylily. Sometimes called ditch lily.

'Black-eyed Stella' is renowned for its deep reddish maroon centered, golden petaled flowers about 3" wide. It grows about 14", multiplies well, and reblooms.

'Happy Returns' has dark green foliage and 18" scapes with canary yellow flowers. Will rebloom until frost.

'Pardon Me' is 18" and produces miniature cranberry red flowers with a narrow yellow watermark and green throat. Blooms from mid season to fall.

'Purple de Oro' is a striking compact miniature purple that blooms all summer. The dark purple blooms are 2.5" on 20" scapes.

Heuchera, Coral Bells

Common Name: Coral Bells
Zone: 4 to 9
Plant Type: Herbaceous perennial
Height: 1 to 2 feet
Spread: 1 to 1.5 feet
Bloom Time: June - July
Bloom Color: Various
Sun: Full sun to part shade
Water: Medium
Maintenance: Medium

Coral Bells are mounding plants with heart shaped, rounded, or star shaped leaves. They tend to be evergreen in most climates. 'Palace Purple' has large, shiny star shaped leaves ranging in color from olive green to purplish-bronze. Tiny white flowers rise above foliage on wiry stems. 'Plum Pudding' has plum-purple foliage with silver veins. Nice compact grower with foliage reaching 8". 'Splendens' has scarlet blooms that float up to 2' atop attractive green 6-8" foliage 'Silver Scrolls' has 12" foliage of silver and maroon and 2" cream flowers that open from pink buds.

Hosta, Plantain Lily

Common Name: Hosta
Zone: 3 to 9
Plant Type: Herbaceous perennial
Height: 1 to 2 feet
Spread: 1 to 3 feet
Bloom Time: June - August
Bloom Color: Lavender, white, violet, lilac
Sun: Part shade to full shade
Water: Medium
Maintenance: Low

Hostas are a dependable and versatile perennial requiring little care. They are grown primarily for their beautiful foliage which provides color, contrast and texture to the landscape. Hostas are easily grown in average, medium moisture, well-drained soils in part shade to full shade.

'Albo-marginata' is an old standard 18" hosta with green leaves edged in white, and lavender flowers.


'Aureo-marginata' has slightly puckered dark green leaves edged with golden yellow. Usual height is 18-24" and flowers are lavender-blue.

'Blue Cadet' is a compact 16" hosta with textured blue foliage and lavender flowers.

‘Francee’ is generally considered to be one of the best of the white-margined hostas. Heart-shaped, dark green leaves have narrow white margins. Foliage holds good color throughout the growing season. Funnel-shaped, pale lavender flowers in dense racemes appear in late summer atop leafy green scapes rising above the foliage mound to 30” tall.

‘Gold Standard’ is a medium to large hosta that grows in a mound to 22" tall and to 36" wide. Leaves have light green and dark green margins. Pale lavender flowers bloom in mid-summer.

‘Golden Tiara’ is a small 15" hosta with heart shaped green leaves with golden margins and deep lilac flowers.

'Hyacinthina' has broad, firm, heart shaped leaves of gray-green on top and glaucous blue below. Grows about 24" and has pale lavender flowers.

'Krossa Regal' has frosty blue-green wavy-edged leaves and grows in a vase shape 2-3' tall. Flowers are fragrant, white and trumpet shaped.

'Royal Standard' forms a 26" mound of glossy, wavy, green leaves. The white flowers have fragrance that is most pronounced in the evening.

'Blue Angel' has large blue-green leaves of heavy substance that form a huge mound of 36". Flowers are light lavender.

'Frances Williams' has giant corrugated blue-green leaves with wide chartreuse to yellow margins. Flowers are near white. Height is about 22"

'June has wide, blue-green edges and chartreuse centers in Spring. Centers turn gold in summer. Flowers are pale levender-blue. Height of clumps is usually 15".

'Night Before Christmas' forms an 18" mound of dark green leaves with showy white centers and pale lavender flowers.

'Patriot' is a hosta that features a 12-20" tall mound of large, variegated, oval leaves which have deep green centers and wide irregular white margins. Bell-shaped, lavender flowers appear in summer on scapes rising well above the foliage mound to 34" tall.

Sieboldiana ‘Elegans’ is a very large hosta growing to 30" tall and 48" in diameter. Features large, heart-shaped, thick-textured, blue-green leaves, mostly white flowers with a violet tinge on scapes up to 36".

‘Sum and Substance’ is an immense hosta growing to 36" high. Features large heart-shaped, thick-textured, glossy yellow leaves which turn golden over time with proper sun exposure and racemes of bell-shaped, fragrant, pale lavender flowers on scapes up to 38".

'Wide Brim' has nice mounded leaves of dark green with wide, irregular margins of buttery yellow. Buds open to reveal pale lavender flowers. Usual height is 16".

Houttuynia Cordata, Korean Houttuynia

Common Name: Korean Houttuynia
Zone: 4 to 10
Plant Type: Herbaceous perennial
Height: 0.75 to 1.5 feet
Spread: 1 to 2 feet
Bloom Time: May - June
Bloom Color: Greenish white with showy white bracts
Sun: Full sun to part shade
Water: Medium to wet
Maintenance: Medium

Houttuynia is a perennial that typically grows 9-15” tall and spreads indefinitely. It is primarily grown as a ground cover in moist to wet areas. ‘Chameleon’ features green leaves variegated with shades of red, pink, yellow and/or cream on bright red stems. Foliage is aromatic when bruised. Tiny, inconspicuous greenish-white flowers in 1-1.5” spikes are subtended by four showy white petal-like bracts. Flowers appear in mid to late spring.

Hypericum Calycinum, St. John's Wort

Common Name: St. John's Wort
Zone: 5 to 9
Plant Type: Deciduous schrub
Height: 1 to 1.5 feet
Spread: 1.5 to 2 feet
Bloom Time: July - August
Bloom Color: Bright yellow
Sun: Full sun to part shade
Water: Medium
Maintenance: Low

St. John's Wort is a shrub, typically growing 12" (less frequently to 18") high and 24" wide, which is frequently planted as a ground cover. It features large, rose-like, 5-petaled, yellow flowers having numerous, bushy stamens with reddish anthers. Flowers appear singly or in groups of 2-3 and cover the plant in summer. Oval to oblong, leaves are rich green in sun but are a lighter, yellowish green in shade.

Lamium Maculatum, Spotted Dead Nettle

Common Name: Spotted Dead Nettle
Zone: 3 to 8
Plant Type: Herbaceous perennial
Height: 0.25 to 0.5 feet
Spread: 1 to 2 feet
Bloom Time: May - July
Bloom Color: Light pink
Sun: Part shade to full shade
Water: Medium
Maintenance: Low

Spotted Dead Nettle is noted for its compact size, variegated foliage, pink flowers and spreading habit. It is a mat-forming perennial ground cover that typically grows 3-6" high and spreads to 12-24" wide or more by sprawling stems which root in the ground at the nodes as they go. It grows vigorously in optimum conditions but is easy to control and is not considered to be too aggressive. Features arrowhead-shaped, silvery white leaves with thin green margins. Clusters of small light pink flowers appear at the stem ends in late spring to early summer, sometimes with a brief fall rebloom.

Lavandula Angustifolia, Lavender

Common Name: Lavender
Zone: 5 to 8
Plant Type: Herbaceous perennial
Height: 1 to 1.5 feet
Spread: 2 to 4 feet
Bloom Time: June - August
Bloom Color: Lavender-purple-blue
Sun: Full sun
Water: Dry to medium
Maintenance: Medium

Lavender has been a mainstay of herb gardens for many years. This “true lavender” is commercially planted for harvesting its oils for use in perfumes. Lavender flowers and foliage are also popular additions to sachets and potpourris. 'Hidcote Superior' has very fragrant lavender-purple flower spikes that fill the air all summer with their sweet scent. The dilvery-gray foliage remains a compact 16". 'Munstead' lavender has rich lavender-blue blooms all summer. This 12-15" plant is thought to be the hardiest lavender.

Leucanthemum Superbum, Shasta Daisy

Common Name: Shasta Daisy
Zone: 5 to 9
Plant Type: Herbaceous perennial
Height: 1 to 3 feet
Spread: 2 to 3 feet
Bloom Time: July - September
Bloom Color: White rays with yellow center disks
Sun: Full sun
Water: Dry to medium
Maintenance: Low

'Becky' Shasta Daisy is large, growing 2-3' tall on rigid stems which do not require staking. 'Snowlady' is shorter, typically 1' or less. Features 3-4" diameter flower heads with the classic white rays and yellow center disks and medium green leaves. They have a long bloom period of July through September. Excellent and long-lasting fresh cut flower.

Liatris Spicata, Gayfeather

Common Name: Gayfeather
Zone: 3 to 8
Plant Type: Herbaceous perennial
Height: 1.5 to 2 feet
Spread: 0.75 to 1.5 feet
Bloom Time: July - August
Bloom Color: Rosy-purple
Sun: Full sun
Water: Medium
Maintenance: Low

Liatris spicata is an upright, clump-forming perennial which is native to moist low grounds, meadows and marsh margins. It features terminal spikes (6-12" long) of rounded, fluffy, rosy-purple flower heads which appear atop rigid, leafy flower stalks. One or more stalks arise from a tuft of narrow, grass-like, medium green leaves. Stem leaves gradually decrease in size toward the top.

Lythrum, Loosestrife

Common Name: Purple Loosestrife
Zone: 5 to 9
Plant Type: Perennial
Height: 2 to 4 feet
Spread: 2 to 4 feet
Bloom Time: May - September
Bloom Color: Purple
Sun: Full sun
Water: Medium to wet
Maintenance: Low

Lythrum is a clump-forming wetland perennial found in marshes, swamps, pond ditches and wet meadows. In full flower, lystrum produces spectacular bloom. It typically grows 2-4’ tall on stiff upright stems. Magenta flowers appear in dense spikes (to 18” long) over a long summer to early fall bloom period. If sheared in mid-summer, new foliage generally will appear in 2 weeks with a possible fall rebloom.

Liriope, Lilyturf

Common Name: Lilyturf
Zone: 5 to 10
Plant Type: Perennial
Height: 1 to 2 feet
Spread: 1 to 2 feet
Bloom Time: August - September
Bloom Color: Lavender
Sun: Full sun to part shade
Water: Medium
Maintenance: Low

'Big Blue' lilyturf is a tufted, grass-like perennial which typically grows 12-18" high and features a clump of strap-like, arching, glossy, dark green leaves. Variegated lilyturf has arching leaves of yellowish-white and green. Clumps slowly expand by short stolons, but do not spread. 'Spicata' is a creeping lilyturf which has a spreading habit. Erect, showy flower spikes with tiered whorls of dense, lavender flowers rise just above the leaves in late summer. Flowers give way in fall to blackish berries which often persist into winter. Evergreen in the South, but foliage can turn brown in areas with cold winters such as Ohio.

Nepeta Faassenii, Catmint

Common Name: Catmint
Zone: 4 to 8
Plant Type: Herbaceous perennial
Height: 2 to 3 feet
Spread: 0.5 to 0.75 feet
Bloom Time: April - September
Bloom Color: Lavender blue
Sun: Full sun to part shade
Water: Dry to medium
Maintenance: Low

Catmint features loose whorls of small, abundant, lavender-blue flowers atop square, leafy 2-3' tall stems with aromatic, gray-green foliage. Blooms in spring with almost continuous rebloom into fall under optimum growing conditions and proper shearing of spent flower spikes.

Pachysandra Terminalis

Common Name: Japanese Pachysandra
Zone: 5 to 9
Plant Type: Perennial
Height: 0.5 to 1 foot
Spread: 1 to 1.5 feet
Bloom Time: April
Bloom Color: White
Sun: Part shade to full shade
Water: Medium
Maintenance: Low

Japanese pachysandra is a shrubby, evergreen ground cover which grows 8-12" high and spreads by rhizomes to form a dense carpet of rich, dark green foliage. Oval leaves (2-4" long) appear primarily in whorls at the stem ends. Tiny white flowers in 1-2" long, terminal spikes bloom in early spring.

Parthenocissus, Boston Ivy

Common Name: Boston Ivy
Zone: 3 to 9
Plant Type: Vine
Height: Climbs to 40 feet
Spread: Indefinite
Bloom Time: Early to mid-summer
Bloom Color: Greenish-white
Sun: Full sun to moderate shade
Water: Medium
Maintenance: Low

Boston Ivy is a deciduous vine which can climb up to 40' and cling to brick, stone or wood. The notched green leaves turn scarlet in the fall. It will grow in sun or shade.

Penstemon Digitalis, Beard Tongue

Common Name: Beard Tongue
Zone: 3 to 8
Plant Type: Herbaceous perennial
Height: 2 to 3 feet
Spread: 1.5 to 2 feet
Bloom Time: April - June
Bloom Color: White
Sun: Full sun
Water: Dry to medium
Maintenance: Medium

'Husker Red' penstemon has maroon-red foliage with a dark green underlay. White flowers with a tinge of light pink are borne on strong upright stems.

 

Perovskia Atripicifolia, Russian Sage

Common Name: Russian Sage
Zone: 5 to 9
Plant Type: Herbaceous perennial
Height: 3 to 5 feet
Spread: 2 to 4 feet
Bloom Time: July - October
Bloom Color: Lavender / blue
Sun: Full sun
Water: Dry to medium
Maintenance: Low

Russian Sage is a woody-based perennial of the mint family which typically grows 3-5' tall and features fine, aromatic gray-green leaves on stiff, upright, stems and whorls of lavender blue flowers. 'Little Spire' is a shorter variety with similar lavender-blue blooms and a long bloom period.

Phlox Paniculata, Garden Phlox

Common Name: Garden Phlox
Zone: 3 to 8
Plant Type: Herbaceous perennial
Height: 2 to 4 feet
Spread: 2 to 3 feet
Bloom Time: July September
Bloom Color: White or fushia-purple
Sun: Full sun to part shade
Water: Medium
Maintenance: Medium

'David' is a garden phlox that typically grows in an upright clump to 3-4' tall. Fragrant, tubular flowers with five flat petal-like lobes are pure white. Individual flowers are densely arranged in a large head atop stiff, upright stems which seldom need staking. Long mid to late summer bloom sometimes extends into early fall. Good fresh cut flower.

'Laura' is a garden phlox with fragrant flowers long tubes and five flat petal-like lobes which are fuchsia-purple with white eyes.

 

 

Phlox Subulata, Creeping Phlox

Common Name: Creeping Phlox
Zone: 3 to 9
Plant Type: Perennial
Height: 0.25 to 0.5 feet
Spread: 1 to 2 feet
Bloom Time: March - May
Bloom Color: Violet-blue, pink, white
Sun: Full sun
Water: Medium
Maintenance: Medium

Phlox is a vigorous, spreading, mat-forming, sun-loving plant that grows to only 6” tall but spreads to 24” wide. It is noted for it creeping habit, its linear to awl-shaped leaves (which retain some green in winter) and its carpet of mid-spring flowers with notched flower petals.

Rudbeckia Fulgida, Black-Eyed Susan

Common Name: Black-Eyed Susan
Zone: 3 to 9
Plant Type: Herbaceous perennial
Height: 1 to 3 feet
Spread: 2 to 2.5 feet
Bloom Time: June - October
Bloom Color: Yellow
Sun: Full sun to light shade
Water: Dry to medium
Maintenance: Low

'Goldstrum' is an upright, clump-forming, free-blooming rudbeckia which typically grows to 3' tall, often forming colonies in the wild. Tolerates hot and humid summers as well as some light shade. Features daisy-like flowers with yellow rays and brownish center disks. Blooms over a long mid-summer to fall period. 'Viette's Little Suzy' has the same great flowers as 'Goldstrum' but about half the height.

Sagina Subulata, Irish Moss, Scotch Moss

Common Name: Pearlwort
Zone: 4 to 8
Plant Type: Ground Cover
Height: 1 to 3 inches
Spread: .05 to 1 foot
Bloom Time: Early spring
Bloom Color: White
Sun: Full sun to part shade
Water: Medium
Maintenance: Low

Irish Moss is a creeping, moss-like evergreen groundcover that forms a tight green carpet of 1-3". Flowers are tiny and white. 'Aurea', or Scotch Moss, has bright yellow-green foliage and small white blooms. Both are ideal in a rock garden or between pavers.

Salvia Nemerosa, Meadow Sage

Common Name: Sage
Zone: 4 to 8
Plant Type: Herbaceous perennial
Height: 1 to 1.5 feet
Spread: 0.75 to 1 feet
Bloom Time: June - September
Bloom Color: Purple, lavender
Sun: Full sun
Water: Dry to medium
Maintenance: Low

‘East Friesland’ is a clump-forming perennial salvia that is noted for its compact form, purple stems and lavender flowers. Wrinkled, lance-shaped, light green leaves are aromatic. Dense terminal spikes of flowers rise above the foliage to 18” tall over a long June to September bloom period. Flowers are attractive to bees and butterflies. 'May Night' produces dense spikes of purple flowers over gray-green foliage. 'Snow Hill' salvia has white flower spikes and gray-green leaves.

Saponaria Ocymoides, Soapwort

Common Name: Soapwort
Zone: 3 to 8
Plant Type: Herbaceous perennial
Height: 0.5 to 0.75 feet
Spread: 1 to 1.5 feet
Bloom Time: July - September
Bloom Color: Pink
Sun: Full sun
Water: Dry to medium
Maintenance: Low

Soapwort forms a nice patch of semi-evergreen foliage that works well as a filler between stones, in crevices or in a rock garden. Stays low and produces bright pink blossoms.

Sedum, Stonecrop

Common Name: Stonecrop
Zone: 3 to 8
Plant Type: Perennial
Height: 0.25 to 0.5 feet
Spread: 1 to 1.5 feet
Bloom Time: June - July
Bloom Color: Various
Sun: Full sun
Water: Dry to medium
Maintenance: Low

Sedum is a low-growing, sprawling, mat-forming ground cover (also commonly called Stonecrop). It typically rises only 2-6" tall but spreads to 12-18" wide. Creeping, branching stems root at the nodes. Leaves are attractive throughout the growing season. Varieties are available with many flower colors.

Sedum Repestre, Stonecrop

Common Name: Stonecrop
Zone: 5 to 8
Plant Type: Herbaceous perennial
Height: 0.25 to 0.5 feet
Spread: 1 to 2 feet
Bloom Time: June - August
Bloom Color: Yellow
Sun: Full sun
Water: Dry to medium
Maintenance: Low

Sedum 'Angelina' is a mat-forming evergreen stonecrop that grows to only 4” tall but spreads to 24” wide. The fleshy needle-like leaves are golden-yellow. In cold winter climates, leaves may acquire reddish tones in autumn. Star-shaped yellow flowers appear in summer.

Sedum Spectabile, Stonecrop

Common Name: Stonecrop
Zone: 3 to 9
Plant Type: Herbaceous perennial
Height: 1 to 1.5 feet
Spread: 1 to 1.5 feet
Bloom Time: August - To frost
Bloom Color: Pink, bronze
Sun: Full sun
Water: Dry to medium
Maintenance: Low

These tall sedums have sturdy stems to support the massive flower heads which develop in the summer and burst into bloom in the fall. If left standing, they provide winter interest.

'Autumn Joy' can reach 2' and has rose flowers which age to a bronze color.

'Matrona' has gray-green leaves infused with rosy pink and purple stems. The long lasting flower clusters are pink, becoming brown in winter. Height is 18-24"

'Neon' has bright pink flowers and light green leaves. Usually grows 24" tall.

'Purple Emporer' is a 16" plant with dark purple foliage and clusters of dusty pink flowers which age to bronze.

Thymus Pseudlanuginosus, Woolly Thyme

Common Name: Woolly Thyme
Zone: 5 to 8
Plant Type: Ground Cover
Height: 0.25 to 0.25 feet
Spread: 0.25 to 1 foot
Bloom Time: June - July
Bloom Color: Pale pink
Sun: Full sun
Water: Dry to medium
Maintenance: Low

Woolly thyme is a creeping, woody based perennial which is used as a ground cover. Hairy stems give rise to the common name. Stems form a flat mat often no more than 1/2" tall but spreading to 12" wide, with very tiny, elliptic, gray leaves (to 1/8"). Leaves have little if any fragrance and are unsuitable for culinary use. Tiny, tubular, pale pink flowers appear in the leaf axils in summer in a somewhat sparse bloom. Flowers are attractive to bees.

Tiarella Cordifolia, Foamflower

Common Name: Foamflowere
Zone: 4 to 9
Plant Type: Herbaceous perennial
Height: 0.75 to 1 foot
Spread: 1 to 2 feet
Bloom Time: May
Bloom Color: White
Sun: Part shade to full shade
Water: Medium
Maintenance: Low

Foamflower is a clump-forming perennial which spreads rapidly by runners to form dense, 1-2' wide clumps of foliage. Semi-glossy, heart-shaped, 3-5 lobed leaves rise directly from the stolons. Leaves may have reddish variegation along the veins. Foliage is evergreen in mild winters, often turning reddish bronze in autumn and winter. Tiny, white flowers with very long stamens appear in spring for about 6 weeks on numerous, erect, wiry, mostly leafless flower stems which rise well above the foliage clump.

Veronica Spicata, Speedwell

Common Name: Speedwell
Zone: 3 to 8
Plant Type: Herbaceous perennial
Height: 0.75 to 1 foot
Spread: 0.5 to 0.75 feet
Bloom Time: June - August
Bloom Color: Deep blue-purple
Sun: Full sun
Water: Medium
Maintenance: Low

‘Royal Candles” is an erect, bushy, clump-forming, compact spiked speedwell which typically grows to only 10-12" tall. Leafy foliage stems are topped with dense, vertical, deep blue-purple flower spikes which bloom in late spring to mid-summer.

Vinca Minor, Myrtle/Periwinkle

Common Name: Myrtle/Periwinkle
Zone: 4 to 8
Plant Type: Perennial
Height: 0.25 to 0.5 foot
Spread: 0.5 to 0.75 feet
Bloom Time: May - June
Bloom Color: Lavender blue
Sun: Full sun to part shade
Water: Dry to medium
Maintenance: Medium

This species of periwinkle is one of the most popular and widely used ground covers. Trailing stems with smooth, evergreen leaves (to 1.5" long) root at the nodes as they go along the ground and quickly spread to form an attractive ground cover. Tubular, lavender blue, phlox-like flowers (to 1 inch across) appear in the leaf axils in spring and continue to flower intermittently throughout summer into fall. Foliage will mound up to 6" tall. Also commonly called dwarf periwinkle and creeping myrtle.

Waldsteinia Ternata, Barren Strawberry

Common Name: Barren Strawberry
Zone: 4 to 8
Plant Type: Ground Cover
Height: 0.25 to 0.5 foot
Spread: 0.5 to 1 foot
Bloom Time: April - June
Bloom Color: Yellow
Sun: Full sun to part shade
Water: Medium
Maintenance: Medium

Waldsteinia, which is also known as Barren Strawberry, is a compact plant grown primarily as a ground cover. Features strawberry-like, trifoliate leaves arranged in rosettes, 5-petaled, strawberry-like, yellow flowers and inedible fruit. Typically grows 4-6" tall and spreads by stolons and rhizomes to form a thick carpet of foliage.