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That Pesky Driveway Strip and Hot Sidewalk – Solving Landscaping Problems With Alpine Perennials

Gardeners who grow perennials in climates where water is scarce and sunlight is plentiful often have one perplexing difficulty when they are designing their landscapes: What perennials will grow in hot, dry, drought-stressed areas of a yard such as a strip next to a cement walk or along a driveway? The answer I always give: look for and plant Alpine Perennials! Alpines are invaluable in these sun-stressed areas of a yard. Alpine perennials naturally grow to shorter heights and thrive on the lime or alkaline in cement. A curved, colorful border of alpine perennials will change up your yard. Rather than being a repeat of the neighbors’ cookie-cutter type driveway,...

Rock Garden Rock Stars: Perennials that Spill or Cascade

creeping phlox - rock garden

Cascading perennials are valuable assets to any garden, but if you have a rock garden, acquiring some of these varieties is a must! 7 Favorite Perennials for the Western Rock Garden Most of these are the tough, small rock garden or alpine plants that are cold-hardy, low-maintenance and often evergreen. Their foliages are uniquely attractive for some are silver or burgundy-colored while others have masses of waxy leaves that are drought-tolerant. Here are a few samples of perennials that spill over rock walls or container plantings that will enhance any rock wall or rock garden. 1. Aurina or Basket-of-Gold The brilliant gold colors of Basket-of-Gold set spring gardens glowing. Aurina...

Rock Cress – Aubrieta: No One Can Spell it But Anyone Can Grow It

rock cress aubrieta spring garden

The rich purple of Rock Cress with its tiny four-petaled flowers bloom in such a tight mass of dazzling color any spring garden would lack luster without this stunning perennial. Often known by its common name, Aubrieta, this lovely spring perennial should be on your “must have” list. Gardeners in the Rocky Mountains (with the exception of Utah where it is very popular) have not taken to Rock Cress yet, despite its high status of being in the tough, hardy Alpine family. Aubrietia’s origins are the Mediterranean regions. These regions have similar soil and climate challenges as western gardens. This powerful perennial prefers a sunny location in a cooler climate and is...

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Alpine Perennials – The Perfect Rock Garden Companion

alpine perennial garden

Add a Carpet of Color to Your Rock Garden With Alpine Perennials Alpine perennials are those small tough plants that thrive in the harsh environments of a Rocky Mountain home. They perform in the lean, alkaline clay soils, high desert aridness, bitter winters, and the hungry wildlife of western gardens. Alpines grow naturally short with deep roots to preserve their energy even through a drought situation. Alpines are very self-sustainable, requiring little care plus they provide a tightly knit weed barrier in a garden. There is a satisfying correctness when Alpines are planted in rock gardens because they go together and seem made for each other. The plants stay small...