~ Perennial Patter ~
As the lazy days of summer wind down, your perennials are still working hard to provide us with flowers, new growth, and bigger root systems. Make sure that your perennials get the water they need, but use water wisely! When watering your perennial garden, do so before 10 am or after 6 pm. Whether you have a sprinkler system, a hose and sprinkler or just a hose, make sure that each plant gets thoroughly watered. Set the sprinkler system to water for 10-15 minutes, then go off for 20 minutes, then back on for another 15 minutes. This allows the first watering to penetrate the soil and soak in. If watering by hand, have the water wand on a shower setting, and follow the same procedure- watering for a few minutes, allowing that to soak in, then going back and applying more. This also minimizes run-off. Water usually 2-3 times a week for well-established perennials that aren’t drought tolerant; 1-2 times a week for drought tolerant, well-established perennials.
This is the perfect time to add some gorgeous eye-popping color to your perennial gardens.
Late summer blooming perennials will set your garden ablaze with color! Try these:
Black Eyed Susan
Hyssop, or Hummingbird Mint
Coneflower in many shades
Sedum Autumn Joy
Joe Pye Weed
At Tagawa Gardens, we love perennials for their rewarding habit of returning to the garden year after year. They provide masses of blooms, beautiful foliage, and textural interest all season long. Once established, many of them require much less water than lawn grasses. Many are also easy to care for, requiring only occasional deadheading to promote more blooms, which they cheerfully produce.
You’ll find an amazing selection of perennials at Tagawa Gardens. We search coast to coast to find the highest quality and widest variety of perennials for you, our valued customer. Many, like the Plant Select® group of perennials, are grown right here in Colorado, and are perfectly suited to our higher altitude. We also carry a huge assortment of ornamental grasses, vines, and groundcovers, as well as a sweet little collection of rock garden plants in the perennial department at Tagawa Gardens.
Our Perennial Team Is Here for Help!
Our enthusiastic and extremely knowledgeable perennial team members are ready to answer your questions and help you choose plants for your perennial garden, whether it be hot and dry, shady and cool, or somewhere in between! We love our perennials, and it shows!
We also offer Garden Coaching with Debbie, Linda, or Ginger, three of our perennial experts with thirty plus years of gardening experience among them. This is a FREE half hour garden mentoring session, conducted at the garden center, which can help you with garden planning, plant selection, design issues, and planting and care of perennials.
Please call (303)-690-4722 (x100 or x101) for an appointment.
Appointments are not available in May.
Check out our plant lists below, which include the more popular varieties of perennials that we usually stock during the season. Due to various factors, we may not have every variety listed at all times. To ensure that we have what you are looking for, please contact us at (303)-690-4722 (x135).
- Perennials for Shade
- Ornamental Grasses
- Perennials for Fragrance
- Deer Resistant Plants
- Hummingbird and Butterfly Plants
To expand your knowledge of perennials, enjoy visiting the links below. These additional resources have been specifically recommended by our Perennials Department supervisor and are sure to enhance your appreciation of these tenacious plants.
- Fine Gardening
- Perennial Resource
- Missouri Botanical Garden
- National Garden Bureau
For great tips and info about gardening during drought, please visit our Garden during Drought page.
To better understand Colorado's hardiness zones, please visit the USDA Plant Hardiness Map!
To help perennials take root in your garden, view our video on Planting Perennials!
For information on dividing and transplanting bearded iris and daylilies, click on this link to our video!
Are neighborhood rabbits and deer staking claims on your backyard? Click here for some helpful information.
For concerns about pets and perennials safely co-existing, please visit the ASPCA website.
Our Guests Ask Great Questions!
We're so glad that you trust us to answer your gardening questions! Tagawa’s team of perennial experts has a huge amount of gardening experience. We’ve planted it, grown it, read about it, or heard of it, so you can feel confident that we either know the answer or can find it quickly. Here are some of the questions we hear most frequently:
How early in the spring may I plant my perennials? If it’s still April or early May, the answer is usually yes. It’s so much easier to plant after the last spring frost, which usually occurs around Mother’s Day. Can perennials be planted prior to that date? Yes, but you will need to protect newly planted perennials if freezing temperatures are coming our way. This can be done by covering them with an old sheet anchored with rocks, a card board box with a rock on top, or a purchased frost blanket anchored with rocks.
How do I plant my perennials? The soil in the area you will be planting needs to be loosened, or turned, and amended with good quality compost such as Nature’s Yield. Use a ratio of 1/3 compost to 2/3 soil, mixing it well, then rake the area until it’s even. Place your perennials where you would like them; stand back and make sure they’re spaced appropriately. Adjust the spacing if necessary. Dig a hole wider and a couple inches deeper than the root ball of the perennial, and backfill a couple of inches with your amended soil. After removing the perennial from the pot, loosen the root ball slightly and set the perennial in the hole. Make sure the root ball of the perennial is on the same level as the surrounding soil. Back fill the hole with amended soil, watering it in as you go to settle the soil. Then water the root ball thoroughly. For more information, refer to our video on Planting Perennials!
When do I cut back my perennials once the growing season is done? For most perennials, the time to trim all the old, dead leaves and flowers will be in late winter through early spring. This surprises many gardeners who have that urge to trim all their perennials back in the fall, perhaps at the same time they are cleaning up annual container gardens. Perennials need to go through a gradual period of dormancy, which occurs naturally over the fall months. During this time, perennials also store nutrition for the next year’s growth. Interrupting this cycle can have an adverse affect on the plants’ vigor the following spring.
Do you carry ornamental grasses, and how do I care for them? Yes!! We carry a great selection of ornamental grasses in the perennial department at Tagawa Gardens. (See the link above for a list of the ones we usually have.) Once you’ve purchased your ornamental grass, follow the planting instructions above in question #2. Watering is very important for the first several weeks. After planting, check the root ball for dryness every other day. (Every day in the hottest part of the summer.) If the top 2-3 inches of the soil feels dry, soak the entire root ball thoroughly. Continue this for 2-3 weeks. At this time, the plant is most likely starting to establish itself in its new environment. Continue to check the plant frequently and water it thoroughly each time it needs water. Being conscientious about watering the first summer will ensure that your ornamental grass gets off to a great start. When do I cut back my ornamental grass? In March or April, cut the grass down to 6-10 inches above the ground, and it will be ready to go for another beautiful summer. So Easy!!
- What is meant by full sun? Part sun? Full Shade? When shopping for perennials at Tagawa Gardens, you’ll notice that either the plant tag in the plant or the sign with that group of plants mentions these terms. They refer to the amount of light required to grow that plant successfully.
Full sun means at least 6 hours minimum of direct sunlight each day, with more than 6 being acceptable also. This can be morning, afternoon, mid day or all day sun; it usually will not matter.
Part sun means that the plant will not require all day sun. This term is sometimes used to show that the plant is adaptable; for example, a plant tag may say ‘full to part sun needed.’ This means that the plant can grow in full sun-- 6+ hours to all day sun, but will also be happy growing in 5-6 hours of sun, and anywhere in between.
Full shade means that the plant needs shade or dappled shade for most of the day, with 1-2 hours of morning or very late afternoon sun being acceptable.
These are general guidelines for most perennials. For more information about sun or shade requirements, please stop in and ask our Perennial Team! We’ll be happy to answer your questions!
Thank you to our Perennial Team members Ginger, Lisa, Betty and Deb for providing photos for this page! Please contact TagawaQandA@TagawaGardens.com if you are considering using these photos for your own use, as permission is needed.