Tips for the beginner Gardener
Not all Garden flowers are created equal there are some easy grow easy care flowers that go above and beyond the call of duty, that bloom for months at a stretch. Every sensible Gardener should try to make these types of flowers the foundation of his/her flower garden. When you have areas of color you can rely on each season, you have extra time to invest in feature or specimen flowers that often require more specialized attention. Here are some tried and tested long blooming flowers for your home flower garden.
Rudbeckia (some times referred to as Black-eyed Susan) Perennial Flowers
USDA Zones: 3 - 9 - Bloom Span: 3 Months mid Summer- Mid Fall
Full Sun-Partial Shade
Rudbeckia flowers make themselves at home anywhere and many are native to many parts of North America you often see their bright yellow flowers growing along the banks of highway ditches. These flowers like well-drained, somewhat poor soil and full sun. Deadheading will extend their blooming period, a bonus is the fact that cut Rudbeckia flowers will last a long time in water so make excellent cutting flowers for the cutting garden and to bring into your home for vase displays. Their flowers are attractive to butterflies and bees and their seeds can be eaten by birds during the winter months. They are relatively long lived plants that require very little maintenance and are true easy care flowers, Rudbeckias can be easily multiplied by division. There are many varieties of hybridized Rudbeckia flowers but my favorite and most hardy is Rudbeckia fulgida 'Goldsturm", which are native North American wild flowers. Plants form upright bushy clumps offering a very generous display of brown-eyed, golden-orange daisies from midsummer through the fall. Plants may be easily divided in early spring and transplanted to other garden areas where their bright cheery flowers may add color to a more dreary spot
Veronica spicata (Spike Speedwell) Perennial Flowers
USDA Zones 3 - 9 - Bloom Span: 3-4 Months
These flowers start blooming in the spring and keep going all the way to the first frost. The genus speedwell includes a broad range of flowering plants, but Veronica. spicata is the most popular form chosen for most garden environments. It forms a low growing dense mass of dark green foliage from which arise its flowers in narrow upright spikes, many varieties are available bearing flowers in shades of blues, reds, pinks, whites and purples. Removing the faded flower spikes will keep the plants flowers in blossom for much longer. Drought tolerant, Veronica prefers a well-drained soil, excellent for cutting; the flowers are a favorite with butterflies. Clumps should be pruned hard if they get floppy and divided if they become bald in the center; time to divide these flowers is in the fall or early spring.
My favorite- Veronica 'Sunny Border Blue'
Nigella (Love-in-a-Mist/or sometimes love in a puff) Annual Flowers
The Nigella flowers are delicate, feathery, often blue-flowers but can be obtained in shades of pink, purple and white, an annual, displaying delicate fern like foliage and attractive unusual eye-catching seedpods. They self-seed readily and to my mind this feature along with their incredibible beauty is why these flowers deserve inclusion as an easy care low maintenance flowers .They Come into bloom very quickly, if successive sowings are made every two or three weeks in the summer months by saving some of the previous years seed rather than allowing them all to self sow and merely scattering the seed on the soils surface, you will ensure a continuous supply of beautiful and unusual flowers all summer long, Nigella does well in warm or cool areas but prefers a slightly moist soil. you could not find easier to grow flowers ,I seldom rave over annuals to tell the truth there are only a few that I give garden space to but love in a mist is one of them they're a must have flowers for any new gardener.
My favorite-Persian Jewels (seeds) that include flowers from all Nigella's color ranges.
Day lily /Tiger Lily/Ditch lily/Hemerocalis fulva (Perennial Flowers)
The omnipresent Day Lily, found almost everywhere in North America, or at least it is if you live here in Ontario as it is one of the most beautiful of Ontario's wild flowers. a profuse propagator by means of tuberous roots. Transplanting is best in spring or fall, water generously after transplanting .They do not mind overcrowding, as a matter of fact these flowers look their best when in bloom in a large, close knit mass planted groups forming patches of bright orange flowers here and there, dotted around the garden .These wild flowers are incredibly easy to grow just try and stop them. They are at home in nature, or as a back drop or foundation flowers for your home garden. These Day lily's require little to no attention. they provide summer and fall interest and once established are a tall impenetrable ground cover I under plant and inter plant mine with other bulbs that display their flowers when the Day Lily is not blooming, they prefer moist to wet soils, but will grow anywhere sun or shade ,only two years ago I established a large patch in what was largely gravel just off my back patio That's why they grow so well in and near ditches hence one of there common name Ditch Lily, always seems a little insulting to refer to beautiful large star shaped orange flowers by such a demeaning name. Fertilizer is not necessary, except in the poorest of soils. These flowers do not need winter protection and once established, thrive and increase year after year.