Perennial flowers once tall can now be found in shorter varieties fitting a petite garden. These small plants will bloom spring through summer in a sunny border garden.
This perennial idea will fit in a petite garden because it uses shorter more compact plants. Planted together in full sun, this bloom sequence runs spring through summer. The plant combination includes a climber to make use of vertical space along a small border.
Gardeners will want to gauge the spacing needed for plants to fill out in a small garden and add vertical structures for climbing perennials along a border. Fencing or an obelisk, in scale with a petite flower garden, is two ideas.
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Oriental Poppy Plant for a Small Space
Oriental poppies are tall upright plants that are given to floppiness. But, poppies are liked for their late spring early summer blooms and are hardy as far north as zone 3.
Papaver orientale ‘Little Candyfloss’ is a dwarf oriental poppy that has strong stems making it easier to maintain an upright growth habit. The plant uses less space than traditional poppies because P. ‘Little Candyfloss’ grows to 14” tall and 16” wide. The shiny ruffled petals have a soft pink color with blackish purple flares at the center.
Oriental poppies are infamous for their foliage dying to the ground after blooming. Consider a flowering plant that will fill in the open space and keeps blooming through summer. The lamb’s ear, Stachys officinalis ‘Densiflorus’ is a petite perennial flower with bold lavender-pink flower spikes.
Bee Balm Attracts Bees Butterflies Hummingbirds
No matter the size bed, bee balm will bring bees, butterflies and hummingbirds to a flower garden. Monarda x bradburiana ‘Prairie Gypsy’ can also fill in after oriental poppies fade. The Monarda bradburiana species is known for its mildew resistant foliage and earlier bloom times.
Monarda x bradburiana ‘Prairie Gypsy’ grows in a space 12” to 15” wide, up to 24” tall. While the bright raspberry colored flowers attracts attention, the fragrant mint-scented foliage is a pleasant experience for those walking by a border edged garden. The plant is hardy in zones 3 – 8.
Short Climbing Clematis Vines
Clematis is a flowering climber, some varieties growing 6’ – 12’ tall. But shorter climbing clematis vines are more appropriate for small gardens or where the clematis will ramble along the ground among other perennials. Clematis ‘Filigree’ and Clematis ‘Bijou’ are dwarf climbers, only growing to 12” tall and 12” wide. Both are early to midsummer bloomers.
- C. ‘Filigree is has silver blue single and semi-double flowers.
- C. ‘Bijou’ has bluish mauve flowers about 3” – 4” in diameter.
Gardeners who like roses and clematis allow them to climb the same trellis or arbor structure. In small gardens low growing roses with short climbing clematis will work in a similar fashion.
Midsummer Dwarf Perennial Flowers
No garden in full sun would be without Echinacea in summer to attracts bees and butterfiles. Blooms opening in midsummer, these dwarf-size perennial Echinacea will take up less space in a small sunny border garden:
- E. ‘Green Jewel’ is 20’ – 24” tall and 12” – 18” wide. The flower is greenish white with a slightly flat green cone.
- E. ‘Mac N’ Cheese’ is 24” tall and 18” wide, too. The flower is yellow with a greenish yellow cone.
- E. ‘Meringue’ is a 16” – 18” tall and 18” wide plant. The flower has white ray petals around a creamy yellow pom-pom and light green cone; the flower is increasingly more yellow with age.
Phlox paniculata is another midsummer perennial flower taking up less space in a garden, not only for the width of the plant but for the stems drooping over and sprinkling their flower petals over other plants. In addition, Phlox have a tendency towards mildew, further requiring gardeners to space the plants farther apart. Two, much shorter Phlox paniculata, which address these concerns are:
- P. ‘Jade’ has pure white flowers edged with pale spring green coloring.
- P. ‘Aureola’ has bright fuchsia flowers edged in a yellowish lime green.
Compact Perennials for Small Spaces
A combination of compact perennial flowers will fit in small spaces like gardens edging a border or petite planting beds. Gardeners can create small sunny borders with shorter plant varieties, dwarf cultivars of long-time favorite perennials.