I’ll admit it, one of my favourite colours is pink. If I see pink perennials at the garden centre and I need a plant to fill a hole in my garden, chances are at least one of them will end up in my cart. Come to think of it, I have quite a range of pink perennials in my front, side and backyard.
What I love about pink is the range of hues available, so if you’re not into petals with baby pink tones, you might be more drawn to the boldness of fuchsia flowers. There are a lot of options, but I’ve selected a few of my favourites that are in my garden or that I’ve seen on my travels.
Pale- to medium-pink perennial flowers
There are a lot of beautiful varieties of dianthus and most of them are pink. What I love about this plant is it grows in a lovely mounding clump, making it perfect for borders or to fill in a space meant for a low-growing plant in the garden—it only reaches about a foot in height.
There’s a lovely little potentilla beside the path leading to my deck stairs. That one I get to admire. But on the other side of my house is a sweet little potentilla that my neighbour gets to admire. The flowers may be diminutive, but they are long-lasting and pretty when the whole shrub is in bloom.
Rose of Sharon
Rose of Sharon blooms make you feel like you’re in the tropics—they’re part of the hibiscus family. This is probably why they also don’t mind the heat and humidity. My rose of Sharons are all trees, but my parents have a rose of Sharon hedge against a fence, which looks really nice when it’s in bloom.
It took a couple of years to become established in the garden, but now my Japanese anemone is consistently floriferous. I’ve heard from other gardeners they can be a bit invasive, but so far, mine has been easy to contain in its sunny dry spot—near my Happy Face Pink Paradise potentilla.
If you’re looking for a flowering vine, clematis, once it’s established, is a great choice. There are a few different colours—and shades of pink—to choose from. The plants like their roots to be cool, but their leaves and flowers don’t mind the hot sun. Be sure to choose a sturdy place for these plants to climb.
I wait with much anticipation in the springtime for the fleeting week or two that my peonies are in bloom. My garden came with several varieties, all in varying shades of pink. I feel like no sooner do they bloom, then they flop and start to slowly drop their petals. I make sure I snip the ones that are on the ground or out of sight to enjoy in a vase on my deck (aka my outdoor office). Grow them in full sun and be sure to cut the foliage right down to the soil level in the fall to avoid disease.
Panicle hydrangeas are easy to grow and hardy down to about USDA zone 3 or 4. They like a mix of sun and shade in the garden. Blooms grow on new wood, so prune when the plant goes dormant in the fall. If you’re worried about the size, look for dward varieties, like the one shown below.
While I enjoy a harvest palette in my fall containers (orange, red, yellow), my chrysanthemums provide a welcome hint of pink (that still feels like summer) in my fall garden. Some varieties are hardy down to zone 4. I’ve had good l luck overwintering my mums in my front garden. Be sure to water them more often during especially hot periods in the summer.
A friend recently referred to astrantia as “fireworks in the garden.” It’s an apt description: They really do mimic a floral representation. I hadn’t come across these plants until a trip to Ireland a few years ago, where I photographed the most gorgeous pink and green-tinged astrantia. This herbaceous perennial is a pollinator magnet and hardy down to USDA zone 4.
Hot pink perennials
Rose campion is one of those self-seeding plants that finds its way to various parts of my garden—and I don’t mind a bit. The foliage is a fuzzy, greyish seafoam green and the colours are a vibrant highlighter hot pink. It grows well in full sun and stems grow to be at least two feet high. It’s also hardy down to USDA zone 3.
Delosperma, also called ice plants, come in a variety of colours, but there are some lovely pink varieties. Mine is fuchsia and orange. Once they’re established, they’re drought tolerant. They look really nice in rock gardens because of their slow spread. My sister just took a piece of mine for her garden because there was a chunk that was a satellite off the main plant.
Looking for other hues besides pink perennials?
- Purple perennial flowers: 24 brilliant choices for big and small gardens
- Growing yellow perennial flowers—and a few yellow annuals, too!