Gardeners do not have to spend a fortune to grow interesting and beautiful plants and flowers. Inexpensive plants and flowers fulfill many purposes in the landscape. Whether you have sunny or shady locations in your garden, there are plants that will do well under those conditions. Do not be afraid to experiment with different types of inexpensive plants until you find the perfect ones to suit your garden.
Crocus are one of the earliest of the spring blooming flowers. It is not unusual to see crocus pushing their way through a layer of late winter/early spring snow. The flower colors are violet, blue, yellow and white. Some varieties produce a striped flower with contrasting colors. Plant crocus bulbs in full or partial sun locations in the fall. Crocus need about 13 to 15 weeks of cold before they bloom.
Impatiens prefer locations that are not in full sun. Grow impatiens under the shade of a tree or in the shadow of a building. Impatiens can survive in full sun with daily and sometimes twice daily waterings. The flowers bloom in an assortment of pink, red, orange and purple hues, as well as in white. Plant in mass to create striking borders of color. Impatiens grow 6 inches to 2-1/2 feet tall and can spread up to 2 feet.
Marigolds tend to form mounds that are wider than they are tall. Most common varieties bloom in shades of yellow, orange and red with green or dark green foliage. Marigolds grow 6 to 15 inches high. Butterflies and hummingbirds are attracted to the flowers. Marigolds prefer well drained soil and perform well in containers. Remove spent blooms from the plant to promote continuous flower production during the growing season.
Ferns have been around for over 300 million years and today we know of roughly 12,000 species. Ferns are non-flowering The leaf of a fern is a frond. Fronds vary greatly in length and width among species. Ferns perform well in filtered shade; try to mimic the light that breaks through tall trees in the woodlands. Give them soil rich with organic matter.
There are hundreds of species and close to 4000 hosta cultivars in the American Hosta database. It is a very popular plant that fits in well in many gardens. Most hostas perform well in partial shade and tolerate full sun locations. The foliage comes in a wealth of textures and shapes. The leaves grow in a wide range of of greens, blues, yellows and white. Hostas perform well in moist and fertile soil.
Sedums, also known as stonecrop, are a group of succulents that grow in a wide range of shapes and sizes. Sedums require very little maintenance, especially if gardeners plant them in a sunny location, in soil that drains well. Sedums are low growing plants. They work well as groundcover, but are particularly striking in a rock garden.