The sight of a well-kept garden is a delight for most people; but only we gardening enthusiasts understand just how much effort, patience and love it takes to keep those plants in tip-top condition. Sometimes, a little help from Mother Nature’s little workers is more than welcome! Pollinators—most commonly bees, butterflies and flower beetles—are animals that move pollen from one flower to the other, aiding in the fertilization process of plants. In simpler words, they are an essential part of your garden’s life cycle!
So, by choosing plants that are known to attract these helpful pollinators, you can do yourself and your garden a favor. Plus, wouldn’t you like to watch colorful butterflies flutter around a profusion of charming flowers on a calm summer morning? If your answer is yes, take a look at our list for some classic perennials that are not only absolutely gorgeous, but useful, too!
With its iconic dark center and brightly colored rays, Black-Eyed Susan is one of the most well-recognized flowers native to North America. It spreads easily from seed, requires very little care, and is eager to grow. Black-eyed Susans are a favorite old-fashioned variety among many gardeners due to its simple look and timeless allure, but it is admired by pollinators, as well! A variety of bees, wasps and critters love to pollinate this flower, and even a number of birds feed on the seed heads, making Rudbeckia a major player in the health and growth of your local environment.
Peonies are classic plants that bring lush foliage and beautiful fragrance to gardens. They are versatile and simple to grow; in fact, they are known to be one of the most dependable perennials out there! The garden peony blooms in many different colors and bi-colors, and it’s an essential part of wedding bouquets and highly fragrant arrangements. Naturally, the large amount of nectar produced by its buds and the sweet scent of the flowers attract pollinators; but this flower is also able to perform self-pollination.
Hemerocallis is another very common, widely cultivated perennial. It has thousands of different varieties, but it’s generally known to be a robust, easy-care plant that can endure various environmental conditions ranging from polluted cities to dry soils. It’s commonly known as daylily as each flower lasts for only one day. Daylily can grow up to four feet tall, and the elegant shape of its colorful petals adds to its unique charm.
You may have heard of the medicinal wonders of Echinacea, but never thought the elegant coneflowers adorning many gardens were actually the same plant! Coneflower is a great perennial that will add life and color to your garden, especially now that it comes in a variety of shapes and forms. It’s also a favorite among butterflies, and songbirds are attracted to its seed heads.
Make It Your Own
Whether you’re going for an informal cottage garden style or a well-defined traditional garden, a little knowledge about your zone, seeds, plants and their specific properties can go a long way. Your choices in what plants to grow will also depend on what you expect from your gardening experience; for a small number of decorative flower beds, you can choose colorful annuals with shorter lifespans and grow them again every year, whereas perennials will be your best friend if longevity is what you have in mind. Alternatively, you can go for numerous different types of plants, put your gardening gloves on, and create your own perfect haven.