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Best Perennial Flowers for Spring Gardens

White Bearded Iris

White Bearded Iris in My Flower Garden

White Bearded Iris in My Flower Garden

I love flowers, the more the better! When we moved out to the country I had all the room I needed to plant all the flowers I wanted and I went crazy! I created more flowerbeds than I could keep up with. I knew that I wanted to plant mostly perennials so I would not have to re-plant each year. I spent hundreds of dollars planting flowers that I really knew nothing about. After several years of trial and error, and learning a lot, I have found several perennial flowers that are not only hardy, but also very easy to care for. These are what I consider to be the best perennial flowers for spring gardens. They are hardy plants that need little care.

Dazzling Daffodils

Backlit Daffodils

Backlit Daffodils


These are one of the first flowers to bloom in spring and are just about the easiest flower there is to grow. They grow from bulbs and are extremely hardy. They come in colors from white and yellow to a deep orange. You want to plant your bulbs early enough in fall that the roots will take hold before the first freeze. You should plant your bulbs about 3-4 inches apart in a hole that is about 2 times deeper than the height of the bulb. Plant it with the pointed end up. Cover with soil, pat down and water. Daffodils prefer full sun, but as they will bloom long before your trees have put on leaves, planting them under trees is not a problem. Dead head the blooms once they fade, but do not remove them stem as it continues to feed the plant. Once the leaves turn yellow or brown, you can them snip the off.

Terrific Tulips

Purple Tulips and Pansies

Purple Tulips and Pansies


Tulips are another early bloomer and come in every color you can think of from white to black. They too, are grown from bulbs and need to be planted a few weeks before the first frost. With tulips, there are “early” bloomers, “mid” bloomers and “late” bloomers. You may want to stagger these different bloomers in order to have a continuous blooming tulip bed for a longer period of time. Tulips need to be planted in a sunny location. Plant the bulbs about 6 inches apart and about 2 inches below the ground for best results. You will want to remove the bloom just as it starts to fade. Leave the stem, as it will continue to feed the plant. Once the leaves have turned yellow, you can gently pull them off or snip them off if you prefer. It you leave the leaves alone, it won't be long before the simply fall off.

Heavenly Hyacinth

Light Purple Hyacinth

Light Purple Hyacinth


Hyacinth are one of the most popular spring flowering bulbs. Their most common colors are pink, purple and white. Hyacinth are a very fragrant flower and many are grown indoors in early spring for their fragrance. They are low growing plants and many people plant them in planters outside about “sniffing” range, so they can enjoy their fragrance as they walk by. Plant Hyacinth 6-8 inches deep, pointed end up and space plants about six inches apart. They can be planted in rows, or in groups. Just be sure not to let them get over crowded. Again, being bulbs, the best time to plant Hyacinth are a few weeks before the first freeze, in order for the roots to have time to take hold. Cover with soil, give one good watering and wait for spring. Once the blooms have faded, snip the bloom as close to the tip of the stem as possible as the stem will continue to feed the plant. Once the leaves have turned yellow or brown, you can snip them off, but they normally just fall off on their own.

Captivating Crocus

Beautiful purple crocus.

Beautiful purple crocus.


Crocus need very little care and are always one of the very first flowers to pop up even before spring has actually sprung. I have seen them blooming while surrounded in snow! Plant them in “drifts” in sun to part shade. The need to be plated about 3-4 inches apart and about 3-6 inches deep. They are hardy from zones 4-8. The most likely reason for crocus to not do well is over-watering. They like water in spring and fall, but you can actually over water them in summer, so don’t plant them near other plants that you will be watering often.

Irresistible Iris

Two White Bearded Iris with Rain Drops

Two White Bearded Iris with Rain Drops

Bearded Iris

The Bearded Iris is another perennial flower that blooms in spring, but a little later than the crocus, tulips and daffodils. They grow from rhizomes instead of bulbs. Bearded Iris come in many different colors and their leaves will add beauty to your flower garden even after the flowers have stopped blooming. The best time to plant your rhizomes are in early fall. Again, you want to be sure that the roots have time to take hold before the first freeze. Do not plant iris rhizomes deep. They need to be planted so the top of the rhizome is just below the ground. These iris need at least half a day of sun and good drainage. If they get too much water, it will cause the rhizome to rot. Bearded Iris need to be planted about 6 inches apart. They look beautiful in clumps but over crowding can cause them to stop blooming. You may need to thin them out from time to time as they put on new plants. Iris are very easy to transplant.

Fantastic Phlox

Close-up of pink creeping phlox.

Close-up of pink creeping phlox.

Creeping Phlox

Creeping Phlox is also known as Moss Phlox. It is a very hardy plant that blooms early spring. Phlox should be planted in full sun, but in really hot regions, it may need some afternoon shade. If you are planting by seed, you will want to plant before the last frost in spring. Plant you seeds approximately 7-8 inches apart and about 1 inch deep. Keep the soil moist until they have had time to establish their roots. You may want to trim them back or “dead head” them after their first bloom to encourage new growth. This is an excellent plant to have “spilling” over the edge of raised flowerbeds.

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I hope I have given you some useful information here about the best perennial flowers to grow in your spring garden. These plants are all hardy plants they need little care. These perennials should be hardy for zones 5-8. Happy planting!

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    Iris flowers come in almost every color of the spectrum and are one of the easiest flowers to grow and maintain. Find some facts and history on the Bearded Iris flower as well as how to plant, grow, and maintain your iris.
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This content reflects the personal opinions of the author. It is accurate and true to the best of the author’s knowledge and should not be substituted for impartial fact or advice in legal, political, or personal matters.

© 2012 Sheila Brown


Sheila Brown (author) from Southern Oklahoma on April 21, 2015:

Hi Sandy! My iris are blooming right now and I walk out and take pictures of them every day! I do love spring and can't wait for more of my flowers to start blooming. I have already bought several annuals and put out on my patio. I love being surrounded by flowers! Thanks for stopping by and have a beautiful day!

Sandy Mertens from Wisconsin on April 19, 2015:

Can't wait to see our flowers bloom again. These are so lovely.

Sheila Brown (author) from Southern Oklahoma on May 27, 2013:

Hello cashmere! I'm glady you enjoyed my hub. Thank you for your kind commets! Have a wonderful day! :)

cashmere from India on May 26, 2013:

I always though there was more choice for a winter garden, now I know better. beautiful pictures

Sheila Brown (author) from Southern Oklahoma on May 26, 2013:

Thank you moonlake! I'm sure the flowers that do best in your area up north are much different than here in southern Oklahoma. I'm glad you enjoyed my hub, thank you for your kind comment and vote! :)

moonlake from America on May 26, 2013:

Enjoyed your hub beautiful flowers and beautiful photos. Voted up.

Sheila Brown (author) from Southern Oklahoma on March 15, 2012:

Hi Lyn. I am glad you enjoyed my hub. I hope you found everything you were looking for. Thank you for your kind comment and clicks! Have a wonderful day! :)

Lyn.Stewart from Auckland, New Zealand on March 15, 2012:

wonderful hub ... clicked lots of buttons lol

Sheila Brown (author) from Southern Oklahoma on March 15, 2012:

Hi RTalloni! Thank you for your kind comments! My tulips aren't blooming yet, I am beginning to wonder about them. My hyacinth did not do as well as last year either. We had a terrible drought here this past summer and fall, I am wondering if that may have something to do with it. Waiting for my iris to bloom, it's a little early here for them. Glad you enjoyed my hub, thanks for commenting, it is always appreciated! Have a wonderful spring! :)

Sheila Brown (author) from Southern Oklahoma on March 15, 2012:

Hello anglnwu. Thank you so much for your kind comment! If a person could sniff all the fragrance out of a hyacinth, I would probably have done it! LOL Thank you for reading and commenting on my hub, it is always appreciated! Have a wonderful day! :)

Sheila Brown (author) from Southern Oklahoma on March 15, 2012:

Hello Cloverleaf! Thank you for your kind words. I'm glad you liked my hub. BTW - I shared your feeding the stringray hub on my blog. I thought it was awesome! :)

Sheila Brown (author) from Southern Oklahoma on March 15, 2012:

Hello cebutouristspot! Thank you for your kind comment. I am sorry, you must have pollen related allergies. I am happy the you enjoy my pictures. Have a wonderful day! :)

cebutouristspot from Cebu on March 15, 2012:

Love the photos. I can only appreciate flowers in photos as they make me sick. If I get to up close and personal with them :)

RTalloni on March 15, 2012:

This is a lovely list of early flowers for pretty blooms! I just discovered that my creeping phlox is already beginning to bloom. Our daffodils are gone now, but I have some hot pink tulips that multiplied in bloom now, and my white iris are popping. Have to remember to water them to keep the blooms happy for as long as possible! My hyacinth continue to struggle along…I need to figure out why so they can flourish!

anglnwu on March 15, 2012:

I love flowers to a fault and can't resist seeing what you have in this hub. It is beautiful--I love hyacinth the best for its fragrance and the sheer beauty of it all. Thanks for sharing your spring garden collection--just fabulous and good job on your part.

Louise from Calgary, AB, Canada on March 15, 2012:

Hi Sheila, this is such a beautiful hub - I am dazzled by your excellent photography and presentation. Spring is my favorite time of the year, but here in Alberta Canada we don't see too many spring flowers, except perhaps the odd tulip or daffodil. You've reminded me how lovely all these flowers are, thanks!

Voted up / awesome.

Sheila Brown (author) from Southern Oklahoma on March 08, 2012:

Hi Denise. Thank you, I'm glad you liked my photos. Good luck with the container garden! I bet you do a great job. Thanks for all! (It took me a minute to figure out UBAI) LOL I liked Rebecca's comment too, she makes me laugh! Have a wonderful day! :)

Denise Handlon from North Carolina on March 08, 2012:

What gorgeous flower photos. Interesting tips for these lovely perennials. I wish I had a home I owned with a yard that I could plant a garden in. I rent here in NC but am determined that I will do a container garden this year. :) Great hub-voted up and UBAI

BTW-Rebecca's comment is funny...that would be me! LOL

Sheila Brown (author) from Southern Oklahoma on March 05, 2012:

Hello John. The world is such a beautiful place with colorful flowers. I can't imagine the world without them either. Thank you for your kind comments and vote! Have a wonderful day! :)

Sheila Brown (author) from Southern Oklahoma on March 05, 2012:

You're right Peggy. I would actually trade you, Houston weather for Oklahoma weather. It's not real bad, but I do NOT like cold weather. Thank you for reading, commenting and sharing this hub. I appreciate it very much! Have a WONDERFUL spring! :)

John Sarkis from Winter Haven, FL on March 05, 2012:

Great hub sgbrown! I love flowers as well, cannot imagine the world without them...

Take care - voted up on your wonderful article


Peggy Woods from Houston, Texas on March 05, 2012:

Some of these perennials don't do as well in Houston because we seldom get freezing weather long enough like some of the bulbs require. The people that still want to plant tulips, as an example, have to purchase the bulbs and refrigerate them for several weeks minimum before planting. The foliage would come up again the following year but seldom reblooms.

Up entirely different story. I loved our tulips that we grew in Wisconsin!

Nice hub about Spring blooming plants for the right gardening zones. Voted useful, beautiful and will share.

Sheila Brown (author) from Southern Oklahoma on February 29, 2012:

Hi Lesley! Great to hear from you! I know, my daffodils and hyacinth just started blooming. I am sooo ready for spring! Thank you for visiting and voting on my hub. Glad you enjoyed it. Have a beautiful day! :)

Sheila Brown (author) from Southern Oklahoma on February 29, 2012:

Hi Stephanie. I just picked a bunch and gave to my daughter yesterday morning, it was her birthday and I wanted to give her something that morning when she brought my grand-daughter by. Bright yellow daffodils will brighten up anyone's day! Thank you so much for commenting and voting up my hub, I really do appreciate it. Have a wonderful Leap Day! :)

Movie Master from United Kingdom on February 29, 2012:

My crocus and daffodils are just starting to flower now, it's lovely to see some colour appearing in the borders.

I love all these flowers, thank you for a fabulous hub and voting up.

Best wishes Lesley

Stephanie Henkel from USA on February 29, 2012:

I love all the spring flowers you've mentioned here! In fact, I just picked some daffodils from my garden to brighten up my living room today! The best thing about these flowers is that they bloom so early in the season when we are all starved for some blossoms and color! Very nice hub! Voted up!

Sheila Brown (author) from Southern Oklahoma on February 29, 2012:

Hello precy anza. Good information to know. I cut some of my daffodils and brought them in yesterday, sniffing them as I came in. No rash so far! Thank you for visiting my hub and for your useful information too! Have a wonderful day!

Sheila Brown (author) from Southern Oklahoma on February 29, 2012:

Hi Dave! It's always good to hear from you! Daffodils have to be one of my favorites! They just look happy... Good luck with the Crocus. Thanks for stopping in and commenting on my hub, it is always appreciated. Have a wonderful day! :)

Sheila Brown (author) from Southern Oklahoma on February 29, 2012:

Hah! Hi Rebecca! That's funny, I hope you don't end up in jail! Thank you for visiting and commenting on my hub. I look forward to seeing your pics! Have a wonderful, safe, day! :)

precy anza from USA on February 28, 2012:

Beautiful flowers, one reason why I love Spring season. Just be careful with daffodils thou. I enjoyed some daffodils on Walmart garden, continually sniff the flowers and bought some to plant too. Early morning the following day I got rashes. Did some research and found out daffodils are slightly poisonous, mostly the bulbs and stem.

David Stillwell from Sacramento, California on February 28, 2012:

sgbrown! Great hub! I love the daffodils we grow them and the gophers move them to odd locations... its like Easter trying to find eggs! I rarely grow tulips because the are so short lived as blooms, but they are beautiful. I like the anemone type flowers and poppies a lot. I am growing crucus for the first time this year and so far so good. Again, awesome hub!

Rebecca Mealey from Northeastern Georgia, USA on February 28, 2012:

I love flowers too! I have been creeping around the neighborhoods taking pics. I will share them soon if I don't end up in jail for trespassing!

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