Annuals vs. Perennials

If you haven't already begun working on your garden, don't worry. It’s not too late. Summer’s not over yet. We still have plenty of time to grow the botanical oasis that will be the talk of the neighbourhood. Gardening is one of the most popular pastimes in summer because of its ease. Whether gardening comes naturally to you, or you haven't gardened a day in your life, you can build a bed of stunning flowers with a little thing called effort. One of the essential components of gardening is effort. If you don't plan to hire landscapers and would rather get your hands dirty, then be ready to break a sweat. Although gardening does require elbow grease, the results are usually always worth it. You really do reap what you sow.

One important thing you do need to know about gardening is the difference between annuals and perennials. You may have come across these terms when buying plants. Often you'll find either word on the label of the plant names. One of the most common misconceptions is that perennial plants thrive in the shade while annuals do well in the sun. This thought is far from true. Both perennials and annuals have varieties that do well in either sun or shade, sometimes even both.

You may wonder which type of plant is better. In reality, neither is better than the other. It all depends on your preference. To find the right kind of plant, here is an article to describe the benefits of each plant variety.

Annual Plants

Annuals are some of the most popular plants to use for colourful floral gardens. Some of the most popular annuals are dahlias, cosmos, geraniums, petunias and marigolds.

Annuals are plants that only last one season. What this means is they follow a simple process: flower, create seeds and then die. This cycle is done all in one season. Annuals at a basic level, their primary purpose is to reproduce (or set seeds). The time it takes them to set seeds is different from plant to plant, but typically they don't last between one to three months.

There are a couple of advantages when it comes to annuals. First, you can quickly adapt your garden with new flowers, or the same flowers, once the old plants die. You can also use annuals in plants or fill in spaces to add instant colour and gratification.

The second advantage is you can take advantage of their ultimate goal of creating seeds. For instance, annuals will continue flowering until they have produced seeds. There is one technique called deadheading that prevents seed formations. As a result, many annuals will flower like crazy to produce more seeds. Most annuals will need to be replanted every summer, which can be pricey. However, a small number of annual varieties will self-sow and return to your garden next year.

Perennial Plants

Where annual plants usually last one summer season, perennials are hardy plants that will return every year, which means you don't have to replant them. Even though perennials come back every year, they still only flower during one season (usually summer, spring or fall). Perennial plants typically grow larger than annuals and tend to be more bushy or leafy.

There are also a hardy variety of perennials that fare well in the colder months. The advantage of perennials is they don't require much maintenance, which means you won't have to water them as much as you would an annual plant. Overall, perennials aren't usually as colourful as annuals. Some popular perennials are hostas, hydrangeas, lavender, ornamental grass and coral bells.

Both annuals and perennials have their advantages. The best pick depends on what you want out of your garden. If you want a bold garden with various colours all summer long, and you are willing to put in the necessary effort, then annuals may be ideal for you. If you want a garden that needs little maintenance and will come back every year looking as beautiful as it did the year before, perennials are your best choice.

Countrywide Homes is here to help you build the home of your dreams, so you can plant the perfect garden. Take a look here at some of our current and upcoming communities to choose a home that’s best suited for you.