University of Illinois Extension

 


Sharon Yiesla
,
Unit Educator, Horticulture
Lake County

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Perennial Gardens with a Purpose

Tired of the same old perennial garden? Why not plant perennials with a purpose? The lists below gives a starting point for developing gardens for specific purposes, such as attracting butterflies or hummingbirds, adding fragrance to the garden, or simply producing an ample supply of cut flowers. These lists are a good starting point. Check out the local library and bookstore for books that can give you more ideas.

Cut Flowers

Achillea spp.

Yarrow

Aconitum napellus

Common Monkshood

Alchemilla mollis

Lady's Mantle

Allium spp.

Allium, Ornamental Onion

Anthemis tinctoria

Golden Marguerite

Aquilegia x hybrida

Columbine

Baptisia australis

False Indigo

Centaurea macrocephala

Globe Centaurea

Centaurea montana

Mountain Bluet

Chrysanthemum coccineum

Painted Daisy

Chrysanthemum morifolium

Garden Mum

Chrysanthemum x superbum

Shasta Daisy

Convallaria majalis

Lily of the Valley

Coreopsis spp.

Coreopsis, Tickseed

Dicentra spp.

Bleeding Heart

Doronicum cordatum

Leopard's Bane

Echinacea purpurea

Purple Coneflower

Echinops ritro

Globe Thistle

Erigeron hybrids

Fleabane

Eryngium spp.

Sea Holly

Eupatorium coelestinum

Hardy Ageratum

Gaillardia x grandiflora

Blanket Flower

Gypsophila paniculata

Baby's Breath

Helenium autumnale

Common Sneezeweed

Heliopsis helianthoides

Sunflower Heliopsis

Iris hybrids

Bearded Iris

Kniphofia uvaria

Torch Lily, Red-Hot Poker

Lavandula angustifolia

Lavender

Liatris spp.

Blazing Star, Gayfeather

Lilium spp.

Lily

Limonium latifolium

Statice, Sea Lavender

Lobelia cardinalis

Cardinal Flower

Lupinus ‘Russell Hybrid'

‘Russell Hybrid' Lupine

Macleaya cordata

Plume Poppy

Paeonia spp.

Peony

Penstemon barbatus

Common Beardtongue

Physostegia virginiana

Obedient Plant

Platycodon grandiflorus

Balloon Flower

Rudbeckia spp.

Black-eyed Susan, Orange Coneflower

Scabiosa caucasica

Pincushion Flower

Solidago spp.

Goldenrod

Thalictrum aquilegifolium

Columbine Meadow Rue

Thermopsis caroliniana

Carolina Lupine

Trollius europaeus

Globeflower

 

Fragrant Perennials (foliage or flowers)

Achillea filipendulina. (foliage)

Fernleaf Yarrow

Allium spp. (foliage)

Allium, Ornamental Onion

Anthemis tinctoria (foliage)

Golden Marguerite

Arabis caucasica (flower)

Wall Rock Cress

Convallaria majalis (flower)

Lily of the Valley

Dianthus plumarius (flower)

Cottage Pinks

Dictamnus albus (both)

Gas Plant

Galium odoratum (foliage)

Sweet Woodruff

Hesperis matronalis (flowers)

Dame's Rocket

Hosta spp. (flower)

Hosta

Houttuynia cordata (foliage)

Houttuynia

Iris hybrids (flower)

Bearded Iris

Lavandula angustifolia (both)

Lavender

Lilium spp. (flower)

Lily

Monarda didyma (foliage)

Bee Balm

Phlox paniculata (flower)

Garden Phlox

Oenothera spp. (flower)

Evening Primrose

Viola odorata (flower)

Sweet Violet

 

Perennials to Attract Butterflies: Nectar Plants for Adults

Achillea spp.

Yarrow

Asclepias spp.

Milkweed, Butterfly Weed

Aster spp.

Aster

Buddleia davidii

Butterfly Bush

Centaurea spp.

Centaurea

Centranthus ruber

Red Valerian

Chelone spp.

Turtlehead

Coreopsis spp.

Coreopsis, Tickseed

Dianthus spp.

Dianthus

Echinacea purpurea

Purple Coneflower

Echinops ritro

Globe Thistle

Erigeron spp.

Fleabane

Eupatorium spp.

Eupatorium, Boneset, Joe-Pye Weed, Hardy Ageratum

Helenium autumnale

Common Sneezeweed

Hesperis matronalis

Dame's rocket

Liatris spp.

Blazing Star, Gayfeather

Lupinus spp.

Lupine

Monarda spp.

Bee Balm, Bergamot

Phlox spp.

Phlox

Rudbeckia spp.

Black Eyed Susan, Orange Coneflower

Scabiosa caucasica

Pincushion Flower

Sedum spectabile

Showy Sedum

Solidago spp.

Goldenrod

 

Attracting Hummingbirds

Aquilegia spp.

Columbine

Asclepias tuberosa

Butterfly Weed

Delphinium elatum

Larkspur

Dianthus spp.

Dianthus

Dicentra spp.

Bleeding Heart

Heuchera sanguinea

Coral Bells

Hosta spp.

Hosta

Kniphofia spp.

Red Hot Poker

Lobelia cardinalis

Cardinal Flower

Lupinus spp.

Lupine

Monarda didyma

Bee Balm

Penstemon barbatus

Common Beardtongue

Phlox paniculata

Garden Phlox

Salvia spp.

Salvia, sage

 

April - May 2001: Prevent Garlic Mustard from Setting Seeds | Perennial Gardens with a Purpose | Garden Styles | Preventing Crabgrass Problems in Lawns

 

Past Issues

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