Spring is a time when the Earth comes alive, after the cold and often dreary days of Winter.  Trees have wintered without their canopy of leaves.

A gardener’s favorite season, Spring means a return to the garden at last, to watch it come to life. If you’ve planted a majority of perennials, they will return year after year and you won’t have to buy and plant them again each spring. Annuals, planted each year, typically bloom for a longer period of time and produce more flowers as they strive to create a lot of seeds. Some gardeners mix annuals in with the perennials to create beautiful color combinations.

Some popular perennials to add outstanding color to your garden are:

Salvia

Salvia’s tall, lovely blooms will enhance any garden. This plant can be grown across a diverse range of conditions, from the long winters of Minnesota to the more humid, tropical climate of Florida. Also known as perennial sage, Salvia comes in many exquisite colors including stunning shades of pink-violet and deep blue. After the flowers have stopped growing you can encourage a second bloom by cutting back about one-third of the height of the plant.

Echinacea (Coneflower)

With bright leaves arrayed beautifully around a commanding center blossom, the coneflower is certainly a work of art. If you examine the center of the flower closely you’ll see an intricate pattern of orderly ‘spikes’ that remind one of a sea urchin. With a height of almost three feet, these flowering plants are great for attracting butterflies. If you cut some of their blooms off at the end of the season and scatter them in the garden, they will also help feed the birds.

Lily

Asiatic or Oriental lilies can make a dramatic statement in the garden. At around two feet tall, the Asiatic lily features a range of colors from orange and yellow to red, purple, pink, white or even bicolor.

Oriental lilies are near giants, regularly rising to some six or seven feet tall. Their large, spectacular flowers are luscious to look at and have an incredible fragrance too. Bulb clusters for these plants get better and bigger year after year.

Dianthus (Pinks)

When you want to celebrate the gardening season with an explosion of color, then Dianthus could be the perfect plant to choose. Their sweet blossoms and clove-like scent will beckon you as you find yourself mesmerized by the sea of color they produce. It’s best to grow Dianthus in soil that is slightly alkaline or neutral, and well-drained and loose. Lime can be added to acidic soul, as needed, to raise it to the proper pH level. If you live in a dry climate, you will need to water the plant regularly.