Do you have a hard-to-plant area that has poorly-draining soil?
Turn this troublesome spot into a colorful landscape feature by planting Perennials and Bulbs that thrive in wet soil. Whether you have an area with runoff from a roof or an area next to a body of water, there are plenty of options for you to turn this into a gorgeous focal point of your garden!
Perennials That Thrive in Wet Soil
There are several varieties of perennials that not only tolerate wet soil but also create a burst of color all season long, year after year in the garden. Siberian Irises are one of the easiest Iris to grow and are extremely hardy, making them a dependable plant for any wet spot.
Bonus: These exquisite Irises also attract butterflies to the garden!
Sweet Betsy Trillium, aka Toadshade, is a perennial native wildflower that blooms during the spring. A small deep burgundy flower blooms from the center of the three main leaves. Leaf patterns vary, but include shades of forest green, light green, and silver that together resemble the coloring of a toad’s skin—hence the common name. A beautiful addition to woodland or shade gardens in zones 5-8. (Trillium cuneatum)
A versatile and adaptable native shrub, Winterthur Smooth Viburnum brings dynamic interest to the landscape. In spring, flat-topped clusters of lightly fragrant white blossoms grace the plant, drawing pollinators. Flowers are followed by berries that mature from pink to inky blue, providing food for birds. Glossy green foliage turns burgundy red in fall, contrasting beautifully with the berries. (Viburnum nudum)
The Woodland Wildflower Collection includes 6 varieties of beloved plants found in the woods of North America. Blooming in the spring as the sun peeks through the tree canopy, each variety will provide rich foliage in summer and autumn as they spread and naturalize. Includes Virginia Bluebells, Snowy White Trillium, Dwarf Crested Iris, Jack in the Pulpit, Bloodroot, and Dutchman's Breeches.
The Variegated Hosta Mix combines color-coordinated shades of green, yellow and white, making an attractive, tapestry-like groundcover for shady areas. Known for their tough, easygoing ways, hostas are an ideal choice for poor soils and weather-prone areas and will spread and multiply if you let them. One of the most low-maintenance perennials you can choose! (Hosta)
Additional Moisture-loving Perennials
Ligularia The Rocket is a great choice for moist, shady gardens and illuminates with bright yellow flower spikes that attract hummingbirds.
Spiderworts are hybridized from a wildflower with the wild form of this unique three-petaled flower usually purple. The foliage is lily-like, forming a clump of glossy green. They naturally grow along streams, so give them plenty of water and some shade.
Hydrangeas are famous for their large, ball-shaped blooms that add elegance and charm to the summer garden. They can also be planted in wet soil.
Hardy Hibiscus are extremely easy to grow. All they ask for is full sun, decent soil, and some pruning once in a while. They leaf out very late in spring, so don't think they're dead and chop them down. Be patient, and in a few weeks you'll have attractive foliage and soon thereafter a summer full of spectacular blooms that attract hummingbirds and butterflies.
Bulbs that Thrive in Wet Soil
Many Summer-Blooming Bulbs tolerate wet soil and add unique, gorgeous color and foliage to the garden. If you're in an area that doesn't receive frost, these bulbs will act as perennials. However, if you receive hard frost during your cold months, you'll want to dig them up for the winter.
'Best Gold' Calla Lily brings rich, yellow blooms and plenty of elegance to the summer garden. Flowering from the middle of the season into fall, find a spot in the perennial bed to let 'Best Gold' fill in any gaps that could use a punch of cheerful yellow. Deer resistant and a bouquet favorite. (Zantedeschia)
The Albomaculata Calla is an elegant white, fluted flower with emerald green leaves that showcase graceful speckles in shades to match their blooms. Complemented by a cigarillo-shaped center cone (spadix) in a rich, golden yellow, it's no wonder that this variety is so beloved. At 12-14" tall, plant Albomaculata Callas in full sun (or dappled light if your sun is strong) and expect blooms from mid summer until frost. (Zantedeschia albomaculata)
Plant this Elephant Ear bulb, stand back, and in no time at all you’ll be watching the huge leaves unfurl to create one of the most dramatic foliage plants you’ll find. Extremely easy to grow and ideal for containers. (Colocasia esculenta)
'Mango' Calla Lily's bright apricot blooms are enchanting with coral accents and a blush of green where the flowerhead meets the stalk. Set against its deep green, spotted foliage, 'Mango's tubular blooms are a delightful way to add warm color to the garden. Wonderful in patio pots. (Zantedeschia)
This season, turn that poorly-draining spot on your property into the fabulous garden that it deserves to be! What experience do you have planting in wet soil?