Garden plants fall into one of two categories: annuals and perennials. Let’s take a look at each of these and what are the pros and cons of each type.
Q: First off, what exactly are annuals and perennials?
A: Annuals are those plants that grow, bloom, produce seeds and die within one year. They do not regrow on their own and will have to be replanted. Perennials live for about three or four years and include those plants that produce flowers and then go dormant and regrow during the next flowering season as long as conditions are favorable.
Q: Which require less maintenance?
A: Perennials are hardier and require minimal maintenance. Moreover, they keep flowering and multiplying on their own, they providing you with flowers all year long without the additional cost. However, because they keep on re-growing, regular trimming and thinning is required to prevent overcrowding and decreased flower production. Annuals do not require to be thinned or pruned; however, they do not regrow on their own, which means you will have to buy and plant new garden plants every year.
Q: What are the soil and water requirements for perennials and annuals?
A: Annuals will grow easily in most soil conditions and will also grow in pots with commercial potting soil. Perennials on the other hand have more specific sun and soil requirements and are usually not grown in pots. Both types require approximately 1” of water every week.
Q: Is it okay to have a mix of annual and perennial plants in the garden?
A: Yes, it is. In fact, a garden that features both, annual as well as perennial plants provides the best balance. Perennials keep the garden in bloom all through the year, while annuals allow you to mix things up and give the garden a fresh new look every year.
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