When it comes to choosing which plants to have your landscaper, or yourself, put in your garden, there are many factors to consider. Whether to plant annuals, which require more work, or perennials, which do the work for you, it’s all about how much effort you want to put in. Read on to learn what level of maintenance is right for you and which plants are the best to add to your landscape.
Low Maintenance Plants
Coneflowers and Shasta Daisies
For a beginner, or someone who doesn’t want to babysit their garden, start with self-sufficient plants that do not need regular assistance. For full sun (more than 6 hours a day, direct sunlight) you can look to Coneflowers or Shasta Daisies to name a few. Both of these plants require one inch of water a week, making them the perfect choice in a low maintenance garden.
Pothos are our ‘go with the flow’ plant. They do not have a preference of how much water they want and thrive in partial sun. The only downside to this little one is they will not survive a Canadian winter. Try bringing them inside, or take cuttings at the end of the season.
Perennial Geraniums or Coreopsis
Perennial Geraniums or Coreopsis are fit for a partially shaded area (around 3 hours of sun). Geraniums require watering when the soil is dry, whereas Coreopsis are in need of water only once a week regardless of soil retention.
Hostas and Ferns
Hostas and Ferns are the shade masters and will thrive in a garden with no sun at all! They provide natural beauty to your garden and both these green machines only need watering once a week.
Succulents are a favourite of low maintenance plants, as they have very diverse options, from different colours to markings. They are drought-resistant, prefer bright, indirect light and only need a little bit of water when the soil looks completely dry (around once a week). Try grouping a few different species together such as a Bunny Ears Cactus, Cape Aloe and a Fasciated Haworthia.
For advanced gardeners who want to add flowers into their landscape, start with Roses. Between trimming, pruning, watering and fertilizing, you will need to hold their hand through the course of their life. However, they are one of the more diverse plants, as they come in full sun, partial sun, or full shade versions.
If you are still looking for that burst of stunning colour, but want a more natural look, try adding Croton plants. These extremely delicate plants can have leaves fall off just by being touched. They require full sun for maximizing their rich tones, and without can become dull shades of green. To ensure Croton’s have a long life, water them daily as they do not like to be dry for an extended period of time. Tip: Croton’s also do not like to be drenched, so you must check daily to ensure the soil is never soaking.
Lobelia Cardinalis is a full sun or part shade-loving native wildflower. They thrive when moist, and do not like to be dry. You will need to water frequently to ensure the soil stays wet, especially in the heat of summer. Do not let their beauty fool you, they are extremely poisonous.
Impatiens are very popular as an annual plant that comes in almost every colour. They like partial sun, and will quickly wilt if not given enough water. For these babies to thrive, they need to have a bit of water every day in the heat of summer if planted in containers, and two times a week if in the ground. For them to look their best, try deadheading to allow new blooms.
There are endless options for your own garden, planters, sun time and drainage system. From bright colours to rich greens, constant maintenance, to self-sufficient, there is a plant for everyone. Choose right the first time by knowing which plants will thrive for your circumstances and lifestyle! Speak with a landscaping pro today on what best suits your needs.