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Low-maintenance garden bed

By: Garden Gate staff
Looking for a low-maintenance planting to brighten up a spot in full sun? Try these 5 nearly no-care perennials that will save you lots of work and look great all season.

low-maintenance-island-bed-garden-plan-lead: Tuck annuals, such as these ‘Magellan Orange’ zinnias, into any open spaces between the other plants. You’ll be assured of constant color all summer long.

Sometimes it’s nice to have a garden that’s as easy on the eyes as it is on the back. After all, there’s nothing wrong with creating a low-maintenance garden bed that won’t demand a lot of your time or effort. That doesn’t make you a lazy gardener — just a smart one.

Add extra color with annuals and bulbs

There are just five hard-working, easy-care perennials in this full-sun island garden bed. To start the flowering even earlier, plant some spring-blooming bulbs. Bulbs thrive in a low-water bed like this because they hate being overwatered while they’re dormant in summer. You can also tuck a few annuals, such as these ‘Magellan Orange’ zinnias, into any open spaces between the other plants. You’ll be assured of constant color all summer long.

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Quick guide to maintenance

Here are a few tips for keeping this colorful low-maintenance garden bed planting looking good.

  • Cut maiden grass and tall sedum back in late winter or early spring to make way for new growth and clean up any other garden debris.
  • Sprinkle a slow-release fertilizer or some compost in early spring to keep plants growing strong.
  • Fill in gaps between perennials with long blooming annual zinnias
  • Remove spent salvia and zinnia flowers in midsummer if needed.
  • Shear bloody cranesbill foliage back to within a few inches of the ground if you want to freshen its look. New growth will take off quickly.
  • Plant bulbs such as tulips or daffodils in fall for spring bloom. Place them near the center of the bed so later emerging perennials hide the fading foliage.

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Published: Sept. 17, 2019
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