There are so many choices when we speak of bedding plants. The easiest way to begin is to define terms. When properly planted, annuals will bloom for the whole season but will typically die at the end of the season. Some popular annuals are pansies, impatiens, marigolds, geraniums, begonias, Sweet William, snapdragon, and coleus. Some plants sold in this area as an annual such as a mandevilla are sold as a perennial in warmer climates, and a hibiscus can be sold as either an annual or a perennial depending on the variety.
Perennials will come back year after year but bloom for a more defined amount of time, usually four to six weeks. Daylilies, hosta, hellebore (Lenten Rose), Bleeding Heart, heuchera (Coral Bells), Shasta daisies, peonies, and Black-eyed Susan are a few of the popular perennials in this area. In the fall, mums are usually sold as annuals, but actually are perennials that rebloom each year.
Bulbs can be annual or perennial and bloom for a defined time. Spring-blooming bulbs (fall bulbs) such as tulips and daffodils, are planted in the fall as they need a long period of cool temperatures to spark the biochemical process that causes them to flower. Summer-blooming bulbs such as dahlias and gladioli, usually are planted from early to mid-spring although gladioli may be planted into mid-July for late summer and early fall color.
For the most dazzling color show, a planting heavy with annuals is the most successful. To bring in more texture or to build a cottage-style garden, you may want to incorporate a perennial border. Bulbs can be plugged into almost any garden style and will add interest and beauty.
Don’t have the space for a big garden? All can be planted in containers to add color and interest to a deck, patio, or porch. We have all the products you need to sustain a successful container garden. Polymers added to the soil will help hold moisture to lessen the need to water. Fertilizing plants in a container is a must to ensure they have the nutrients needed to encourage robust growth. We carry both organic and non-organic fertilizers including a variety of Espoma products, our own Bud and Bloom®, Scotts Miracle Gro® and Miracid®, and Osmocote® Slow Release. And we also have slow release insecticides to help prevent pesky insects all season long.
Annuals, perennials, or bulbs - our knowledgeable staff will help you make your choices by working with you to determine which will be the most successful in your garden. We also have a lot of information on annuals, perennials, bulbs and gardening in general on our "Tips and Info" page.