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What is a Perennial?

Unlike their short-lived counterparts, perennials are typically cold-hardy plants that will return again in the spring. They usually bloom for only one season each year (either spring, summer, or fall), but there are also reblooming and long-blooming perennials.

When grown in favorable conditions, perennials often live a long time, but don’t assume they will last forever. Their life span is variable, and some may live for only three to five years. Perennials also vary greatly in terms of their care and maintenance. Some may need to be pruned and divided regularly to maintain their vigor and keep them tidy, while others are tough and undemanding, seeming to thrive on neglect.

Why choose perennials?

  • Although perennials tend to cost more initially, they are a good long-term investment because they return year after year.
  • Even perennials that don’t have a long life span can often be propagated by division or reseeding to perpetuate their population.
  • Most perennials require less water once established, which can be especially advantageous for those who garden in drought-prone areas and want to reduce their water consumption.
  • Planting perennials that are native to your region offers the additional benefit of creating a welcome habitat for pollinators and local wildlife.

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