How To: Plant Perennials

With perennial plants, Autumn and Spring are the best times to plant them, especially herbaceous ones. When planted in Autumn they have time to be established in the warm soil before the winter sets in and the autumn rain will aid in keeping the soil moist. When planted in Spring the soil should already be moist and the temperature will continue to get warmer, this will help the plants establish themselves and bloom wonderfully in Summer. 

We have four simple steps to planting perennials below…

How To: Plant Perennials

Step One

Before doing any digging, it’s worth taking some time to arrange the plants still in their container on the surface so you can see how they will look before planting, and you can work out any spacing requirements. 

Now, take some time to thoroughly clear the area of weeds, whilst taking care to remove the roots of any old plants. From here, you need to dig a hole slightly larger than the pot or clump of your plant. It’s worth having some well-rotted manure or compost on hand as you will need this a bit later.

Step Two

Once you have the holes dug you can then knock out each plant from its container and tease the roots to prevent the roots from growing round and round. This will encourage the roots to grow and spread out correctly. Next, set your plants in the holes at the same depth they were growing previously. 

It’s worth also planting bulbs with perennials as the perennials will conceal some of the dying bulb foliage.

How To: Plant Perennials

Step Three

The next step includes backfilling the soil around the roots and firming it in place with your hands. Even with smaller plants, it’s worth backfilling and firming a couple of times to eliminate air pockets in the soil – as this can cause root death. 

Water the soil thoroughly and top up with more soil if it settles too much. Check how wide your plants will grow so you don’t end up with plants flopping onto a path or lawn.

Step Four

Lastly, spread a thick layer of mulch such as manure or compost around the newly planted perennials. This will help the soil retain its moisture levels and deter weeds from growing around them. Keep an eye on your plants over the winter months to ensure they don’t get damaged. It’s worth taking some time to incorporate some frost protection for your newly planted perennials and they may require some additional watering throughout the first year in the ground or during any dry spells.

In terms of aftercare, if the plants appear yellow or growth is poor, they can be supplemented with a liquid fertiliser. If you have any tall perennials growing they will need to be supported with stakes to prevent them from flopping or being blown over. 

If you need any other assistance with growing perennial plants, simply pop in store at Holt Garden Centre and one of our friendly and knowledgeable team will be more than happy to help you.

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