Yesterday - Easter Sunday - the temperature inside my house reached a balmy 78 degrees. I grudgingly agreed to kick on the A/C...in April. I went to bed comfortably, and woke up in an ice box. And back on goes the furnace.
Here in Ohio, we're used to experiencing several seasons in the same day. But the variable Spring weather often leaves us questioning what to plant in our gardens and flower beds, and when to plant it. Today, we'll look at some of the hardiest, low maintanance flowers and plants for our area.
In case you missed it, a few years back, the United States Department of Agriculture revised the Plant Hardiness Zone Map, and shifted Ohio from Zone 5 to slightly warmer Zone 6, which may give us a little more latitude in selecting plants for our yards. But A.J. Petitti, vice president of operations for Petitti Garden Centers, says "when wading into untested plant territory, caution is the word". We'll stick to some tried and true basics in this blog, but check out this article from the Columbus Dispatch to see what exotic plants some gardeners are having success with, particularly in Ohio's central and southern counties.
Easy Annuals - Annuals are plants and flowers that grow and bloom only for the Summer. Since they will die at the end of the season, we'll focus on which give us the biggest bang for our buck!
Marigolds - These rust, orange and gold beauties top Bob Villa's list of 20 Plants that Survive With or Without You because you can just "put them in the ground and leave them alone - they'll bloom until fall, tolerate most any soil condition and will even rebound after being nicked by the lawnmower".
Petunias - An old favorite making a comeback with a variety of new hybrid styles and combinations, petunias bloom profusely all summer and tolerate heat well, so they don't require daily watering. Plant them in your beds, or in a hanging basket for a charming cascade of blossoms.
Perennials - These plants grow year after year, and once established, need minimal upkeep in the form of watering and fertilizing, since their roots are more far-ranging than annual plants’ roots.
Sedum - A variety of succulent, whose foliage forms a dense, crawling mat that looks fresh no matter the temperature, Sedum is drought-tolerant and low maintanance. Delicate pink flowers will bloom in late Summer.
Hostas - Adding instant class to any landscaping, Hosta plants are a perennial favorite among gardeners. Their lush foliage and easy care make them ideal for a low maintenance garden. The varieties are virtually endless - some suited to shade and others to sun. You may click here for more information on Hosta care from Gardening Know How.
Blanket Flowers - These plants are drought-tolerant, attract butterflies and are deer-resistant - the perfect gardening trifecta. They will bloom from Summer long into Fall if planted in full sun.
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