Top Perennials Part 5 (of many)

We got a blast of a snowstorm last Friday. Not as bad as New England, but a foot of snow for sure.
That's why it's so much fun to write about and look at photos of flowers while it's still cold and white outside!

Here are 3 more that I have in my garden  - I'm sure you would like to have them too.

This is Bergenia cordifolia. It is a strong, hardy plant for a wide range of Zones 2-9.
It has thick, leather-y leaves that are bright green in spring. They later turn a lovely burgundy
bronze in autumn. In the spring, any unsightly "spent" leaves should be removed.

In late spring magenta pink flowers rise above the shiny leaves on a long tall stalk. They are very effective if planted en masse. They also combine well with Ajuga reptans 'Burgundy Glow'.
Just watch the ajuga: it's a spreader.

Lungwort (Pulmonaria) is a great perennial for regions that have mild winters. In harsher climates, they survive if covered with thick mulch over the winter. They tolerate shade very well and bloom in early spring. suggests cutting the leaves back to 3 inches after the plant blooms. It will rejuvenate the leaves. I presume it wouldn't hurt to fertilize it at this stage either. It prefers a rich soil and does not like to compete with tree roots.

I have several types of Iris in my garden, 2 of which are Bearded Iris and Siberian Iris.

I used to have deep purple Bearded Iris and even a picotee blue striped one but they died out.
Bearded Iris are notorious for dying from iris borer, which makes the thick corms all mushy and soft.
I now have only the yellow one but it is a beauty. They are heavy feeders so fertilize in early spring and in the fall.

Siberian Iris are much easier to grow! They are dainty on tall thin stalks and are beautiful in flower arrangements.

They do well if divided every couple of years and they love fertilizer.

In one area of the garden I combined them with little allium bulbs, Allium moly. The blue-purple looked great with the bright yellow.

The nice thing with both Iris is that even when the flowers fade, the long grass-like stalks still add texture to the border.