Traditional English Herbaceous Border.

Traditional English Herbaceous Border.

A Walled Garden With A Traditional English Herbaceous Border.
Many annual plants may be mistaken for perennials if they self seed and come up next year. We think they’re still alive underground and have grown again for the spring or summer.

Perennial Plants may be herbaceous, such as Petunias, Dianthus and Snapdragons and die back above ground in colder climates, or they may have woody stems like the rose, in which case they do not die back above ground. As David Beaulieu from says:

‘All “annual” plants are “herbaceous,” but not all herbaceous plants are annuals’. David Beaulieu.

Growing Annuals In Australia.

Many overseas visitors believe that the whole of Australia is hot and dry, and find it to be quite different after a visit or looking online. I have lived in several towns which are above 700 metres and had the joy of finding beautiful cold climate plants I had never seen. My first crocus was so amazing; it took me a long time to find out what it was.


Cold climate annual plants can be found in such places as the Snowy Mountains, Braidwood (the loveliest town in the world), the Blue Mountains in NSW, along the Great Divide, Gippsland in Victoria, the Granite Belt of NSW/QLD famous for its fruit, and Toowoomba (The Garden City) which is set right on the edge of the Great Divide in Qld, and so many other places. In these types of environments we can definitely grow the beautiful cottage garden annuals such as Hollyhocks, Delphiniums and Foxgloves to name but a few.

If you live in a cold climate in Australia, you will probably know which annuals you can grow, but if you have just moved there, you are in for a treat. When I lived in Braidwood (just SE of Canberra), I experienced my first real winter. Of course, I had visited the Snowy Mountains in winter to ski, but that’s not ‘living’. On our first real winter night the temperature went to -12 C and the horse troughs froze over. And one day it went no higher than 4C. I just couldn’t get warm. So if you need plants which will flower during the cold months, just go to Winter Blooming Plants. There you will find plenty of flowers which will come up in very early spring, after the severest cold is over, and in winter itself if your winters are not too cold.

Alfred Thomas Memorial

The Annual Flower Festival at Toowoomba. Up on the Great Divide west of Brisbane, they are cold climate plants.

A List Annual Plants. Common And Easy to Grow.
This is a list of the Annual Plants I have grown and loved and which have proven easy to grow in Australia. So many of these are grown as Perennials in Australia, but in Northern climates, they may only be found annually. You can also see more about some of these plants on Names of Spring Flowers.

Sweet Pea
Margeurite Daisy (Pink!)
Gerbera Daisy
Forget Me Not
Dianthus (Sweet William)
Portulaca (Moss rose)
California Poppy
Lily of the Valley
Morning Glory
Don’t forget to check out the List of Flower Names A to Z for both annuals and perennials.

Verbena roja

I’ve heard and read of Lemon Verbena in Victorian gardens, but had no idea there was a red! How beautiful. They are fragrant and as you can see they certainly don’t mind a bit of dry weather. Most common are the purples.

Annuals For The Future.
The following is a List of annual Plants which I have not grown, but I sure would like to.

Black-eyed Susan
Gaillardia (Blanket Flower)
Baby Blue Eyes
Morning Glory
Annual Phlox
Creeping Phlox
Pensamientos (Viola wittrockiana), Nymphenburg, MĂșnich, Alemania3
I know old-fashioned Pansies are lovely, but this one is certainly a stunner. Ruffled. Apparently, the colder the climate the more ruffles you get. I have crocheted one, but haven’t seen one yet. Lovely. Plant now in spring for flowers in late summer, autumn and even winter, depending on where you live.

Flower, Gaillardia Pulchella “Red Bloom” – Flickr – nekonomania (1)
Gaillardia pulchello (the Blanket Flower) ‘Red Bloom’.

Which Annuals Bloom The Longest?

Pansies are one of the longest blooming Annual Plants, adding colour to your garden from spring right up until the first frost. If you live in warmer climates, they will even bloom all year round. Other annuals with the same bloom period are Cosmos, Marigolds, Snapdragons, Ageratum, Dianthus, Impatiens and Petunias and so many more.

If you are growing them by seed, sow them several weeks apart and you will be in for a continual show. Also, to squeeze every last flower out of your plants, be sure to deadhead them. Just like roses, this encourages growth in the flowers rather than in the stems and leaves.

In Australia the bloom time is from spring to autumn and even longer. Once again, this depends on your climate zone. And to ensure that your flowers do bloom at their best, liquid fertilizer applied before they are due to flower for the first time in the season will reward you. This is vital if they are in pots. Our Heirloom Freesias this year – oh dear! Forgot the fertilizer and guess what? No perfume – they just smell like pepper. They are in a pot outside the door. It’s amazing how many things we don’t notice as we walk by. And if you want to read about how you can grow the best Spring Garden possible, find out on the Names of Spring Flowers page.

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