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#47557 September 11th, 2006 at 08:23 AM
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Im moving into our new house oct 1st and would like to begin....

Id love to have color and texture all year..which basic plants and flowers should i begin with ? Im in zone 8b!

Ive read Black eyed Susans are pretty good...i like purple foliage too....any help would be great! smile

#47558 September 11th, 2006 at 09:19 AM
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Welcome to the forum! wavey Ajuga has a pretty purple foliage and makes for a good ground cover in shady areas. It is hardy to zone 9. I just LOVE purple heart it is so pretty! Here is some info and not just a good pic. .

I am of the opinion that bulbs are pretty easy to grow. Fall is a good time to get planting/dividing bulbs for next spring. Some of my favorite bulbs are crocus (blooms early spring), grape hyacinths (late spring), allium, daylilies (through summer), and asters(late summer/fall). At least, I think that is when they all bloom!!

Now is also a good time to start thinking about the soil and figuring out what, if any, admendments are needed. I'm sure someone will be around shortly to lend you a hand on the specifics--I'm a gardener-in-training still! laugh grinnnn

#47559 September 11th, 2006 at 06:15 PM
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Persian Shield are a great silver purple foliage plant. Really great to have and I think it might like your zone.

For fall don't forget about the mums - Great color. And sunflowers are great too.

For winter interest I would think about Dusty Millers.

And if Lentil roses grow in your zone they actually bloom in the winter. One of the few plants that do.

Also the walking stick tree is interesting once it drops all it's leaves. The shape is so odd.

Good luck with your new house.

#47560 September 11th, 2006 at 09:13 PM
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spiedee Offline OP
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Lots of great information...i will look into all of them...

...any bulb company you trust?

Thanks!

#47561 September 12th, 2006 at 06:28 AM
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Ajuga has a pretty purple foliage and makes for a good ground cover in shady areas. It is hardy to zone 9.
Sarah, I planted Ajuga some years ago and I hated it! mad It was terribly invasive and it came up everywhere, in my flower beds and in my lawn! eek It was horrible and it took forever to get rid of it. frown

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Persian Shield are a great silver purple foliage plant. Really great to have and I think it might like your zone.
Yes, Tammy, that's definitely the plant to own! Duh I haven't done too well in the past with propagating it, but maybe this year will be different. I get tired of buying it every year but I can't seem to do without it. nutz

#47562 September 12th, 2006 at 08:27 AM
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Patches, good point about the ajuga being invasive. I often forget that some people have grass growing in their lawn, not just large patches of dirt! I'm going to be using it has a very thick ground cover for under several trees. Persian Shields are pretty too! I just love them too!

Spiedee, I asked around about bulb companies and the answer I got is to go through Walmart, Lowes, Home Depot, or some store along those lines. Most people said that ordering them was too expensive and that (for some) the bulbs are shipped at incorrect planting times. However, some places do offer very good guarantees--some offer to replace any bulbs that don't come up.

Also, just a tip, I've heard that squirrels and chipmunks really enjoy feasting upon bulbs (like crocus). So if you plant those away from the house, you might want to put some chicken wire ontop of the bulbs but still beneath the ground.

#47563 September 12th, 2006 at 09:14 AM
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Patti, I love my ajuga! laugh

Of course, it has to have it's proper place. Like a neglected slope or shady area where you can't get anything in, or as an underplanting to other perenials.

#47564 September 13th, 2006 at 09:33 PM
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thanks for the advice everyone smile

#47565 September 14th, 2006 at 04:49 AM
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Most people said that ordering them was too expensive and that (for some) the bulbs are shipped at incorrect planting times. However, some places do offer very good guarantees--some offer to replace any bulbs that don't come up.
Another problem about ordering bulbs through the catalogs is the time factor. Even though they will replace any bulbs that don't come up you've already lost another year of enjoying them! frown At my age, I can't wait that long, laugh I need to enjoy all I can now! wink Then, what if the bulbs they replace them with don't come up either? ters I've just heard of too many people having problems with some of the plants and bulbs they've ordered through the catalogs and the hassle they went through trying to get them replaced. eek I figure I don't need anymore stress in my life, so I always get my plants and bulbs locally. wink

I bought some Stargazer lily bulbs this past spring from Wal-Mart and when I got home I found they were all moldy. eek I took them back and they let me get another package. We opened them, right then and there, to see if they were okay, and they were! smile I was very satisfied with how it was handled and I didn't have to make another trip back there if they were moldy too!

#47566 September 15th, 2006 at 04:17 AM
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Just had to add my vote for ajuga. Yes it can be invasive, but if you have a spot for it where you can keep it in control it's purple flowers are so pretty in the spring in New Hampshire. clp


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