Unusual perennials

Here are three unusual perennials that Kelly Dodson and Sue Milliken of Far Reaches Farm shared with us in Garden Gate’s September-October issue. We love to learn about new plants, and are guessing you do, too! Click ahead to see these botanical beauties and check out Garden Gate issue number 137 to see even more of their recommendations.

Frosted jade bugleweed
Ajuga incisa ‘Bikun’

This little perennial will definitely garner second looks, especially in spring when the green, white and cream foliage is topped by beautiful blue-violet blooms.

Blooms Blue-violet in spring

Light Part sun to part shade

Soil Well-drained

Size 24 to 30 in. tall and wide

Cold-hardy USDA zones 6 to 8

Heat-tolerant AHS zones 8 to 1

Source Far Reaches Farm

Veitch’s peony
Paeonia veitchii

Here’s an herbaceous peony that thrives in full sun and part shade. Each stem has several slightly nodding 2- to 3-inch single pink flowers. The foliage is deeply cut and looks almost like a Japanese maple, giving your border an exotic flare all season. Leaves are bronzy green when they’re young and age to dark green. Veitch’s peony hails from high elevations so it’s well-suited to the sharp drainage of rock gardens but is also right at home in average borders, too.

Blooms Pink in spring

Light Full sun to part shade

Soil Moist, well-drained to sharply drained

Size 24 to 30 in. tall and wide

Cold-hardy USDA zones 6 to 8

Heat-tolerant AHS zones 8 to 1

Source Far Reaches Farm

Vining monkshood
Aconitum episcopale

Did you know that there’s a monkshood that climbs? Vining monkshood does! Deer give this vine a pass, so it’s likely that it has the same toxic qualities as its more common cousin. All parts of the plant can be toxic if ingested.

Blooms Lavender in late summer to fall

Light Full sun to part shade

Soil Humus-rich, moist, well-drained

Size  8 to 12 ft. tall, 15 to 18 in. wide

Cold-hardy USDA zones 5 to 9

Heat-tolerant AHS zones 9 to 1

Source Far Reaches Farm

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