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Tough-as-nails flowering perennials

Posted: Thu Aug 01, 2013 11:58 pm
by j3707
I have a spot I've been working on finding perennials/self seeding flowers that will naturalize. It's a tough spot, a hillside of heavy clay with basically full sun in summer and little rain. These plants also have to hold their own against tall grass. Eventually I want a meadow effect.

Here are my top performers so far:

1) Comfrey (Symphytum officinale) - The comfrey is holding its own and the flowers are pretty. These are seed bearing, and I hope they do spread.

2) Common/Tall Evening Primrose: I grew a few from seed, then scattered the seeds from those plants on the hillside and forgot about it. They popped up this spring and are now about 4' tall. I am impressed!

3)Roses. I hadn't realized how tough these plants are.

4) Lavender. Would be nice if it was taller, but I am impressed with how tough these are.

5) Just planted a Velvet Centaurea and that thing is taking off like it's in nice fertile loam. It got eaten down by slugs and is coming back strong.

Any other "kick @ss and terraform new planets" flowering plants out there? List em if you got em!

Re: Tough-as-nails flowering perennials

Posted: Fri Aug 02, 2013 4:48 am
by imafan26
Agapanthus and daylilies. The need some help in the beginning but after they are established the clumps can crowd out weeds and they don't need all that much water.


Rosemary. It needs to be taken care of in the first year, but can live on rain and some deep watering if the summer is dry and hot. It has pale blue flowers in summer and it is edible too. It may or may not fit in with your meadow look, but mine did get up to seven feet tall and it got a lot of water.

Re: Tough-as-nails flowering perennials

Posted: Sat Aug 03, 2013 3:42 am
by j3707
The soggy winter clay might be a problem for Rosemary, but I'm willing to give it a shot.

Daylillies - I have a few, they are doing OK, but not great. I hope they start flowering more once they are better established. Slugs eat some and leave others alone. I am willing to help them along for a few seasons...

Agapanthus is a new one, I will check it out, thanks!