Flowering perennials signal the return of spring. Here are some favorites.

Flowering perennials signal the return of spring.  Here are some favorites.

What a treat to see some lasting colors in early spring. I have a few early flowering perennials that are beautiful now while others are just starting to break through the ground. I have several perennials that will take some shade and that pair well with hostas, ferns and grasses. I’ve had several of them for years and in recent years have discovered two new ones that I’ve added to my garden.

An ancient favorite wildflower that brings beautiful blooms is Virginia bluebells, also known as Mertensia virginica. Clusters of small, trumpet-shaped flowers emanating from a single sturdy stem look stunning in any garden site. It begins blooming in early spring with pink buds that later mature into blue flowers.

I had one plant years ago and it produced other small plants that I transplanted into the garden. After Virginia bluebells flower and set seed, they die back to the ground. I have to be careful not to disturb this area otherwise the seeds that fell this year may not develop into a plant next year. When Virginia bluebells are mature and established, they have a long taproot and if I’m thinking of moving them, I have to be careful to dig deep enough to get the entire root.

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