Flowering purple perennial plants add wonderful shades of lilac, violet, blue, and lavender to your garden. Purple perennial flowers vary in size from beautiful large blooms on a phlox to delicate violet petals on irises. Planting purple flowers is also a great way of attracting pollinating insects as the various purple shades attract bees and butterflies.
Some types of purple perennials are low-growing creeping plants that help to provide good ground cover. Other flowering perennials are larger shrubs or bushes that have stunning purple, mauve, and lilac clusters of flowers. Some tall perennials have purple flowers that grow at the end of long stems.
Whatever your landscaping requirements are, there are purple perennial flowers to suit your needs.
In this article, you will find out about the qualities, features, and characteristics of the most popular purple flowering perennials.
Iris is a bulbous perennial flowering plant that has some stunning purple cultivars. If you are looking for bright blue or purple flowering irises, then choose the ‘winter iris’ (Iris histrioides) or the ‘netted iris’ (Iris reticulata). However, other types of irises have been cultivated to flower in various shades of purple.
If you want to decorate your garden with incredibly beautiful purple flowers, then irises are one of the first bloomers in spring. Their delicate deep purple spring flowers appear near the end of January or start of February.
Purple flowering irises, as with other types of iris, are hardy plants that survive winter. To make sure irises thrive, plant them where they get full sun and in well-drained soil.
The Garden phlox (botanical name: Phlox paniculata) is a large bushy flowering perennial shrub that has some stunning purple varieties. Some phlox cultivars that have purple flowers that bloom in summer include ‘Grenadine Dream,’ ‘Violet Flame,’ ‘Peacock Neon Purple,’ and ‘Purple Eye Flame.’
Perennial phlox plants grow to about 4 ft. (1.2 m) tall and have a spread of around 3 ft. (0.9 m). From summer to the fall, large colorful flowers beautify this perennial with purple, white, pink, and red blossoms. To encourage more flowers to blossom, deadhead the plant after flowering in the fall.
Purple Heart Tradescantia
Famed for its purple foliage and pale purple flowers, the Purple Heart (Tradescantia pallida) is a great addition to add striking color to a garden.
This flowering purple perennial is a low-growing trailing plant that is good as a bedding plant or in a hanging basket. Although the Purple Heart blossoms during the summer, its light-purple petals are not too pronounced.
To grow this common purple flowering plant outdoors, you need to be in a temperate climate. You can also plant it in containers as a flowering indoor plant where its trailing purple stems will add a nice feature to your room.
If you are looking for a perennial with purple summer flowers, then the clustered bellflower (Campanula glomerata) is a good choice.
This tall perennial grows to about 23” (58 cm) and has clusters of purple bell-shaped flowers. One stem can hold a number of dark purple flowers measuring about 1” (3 cm). The clustered bellflower thrives in full sun and can also withstand partial shade.
There are also other types of bellflowers that produce purple flowers in the summer. Some cultivars include rampion bellflower (Campanula rapunculus) with its star-shaped light mauve flowers or the harebell (Campanula rotundifolia) with lilac or lavender colored bell flowers.
Geranium is extremely common flower. Some geranium varieties have purple flowers that blossom in spring and last throughout the summer. Two types of flowering purple perennials are the ‘Rozanne’ geranium and the ‘Johnson’s Blue’ geranium. Both of these geranium cultivars have deep blue/purple delicate petals.
Apart from having purple summer blossoms, other types of geraniums produce white, pink, and blue flowers. Planting winter-hardy geranium perennials is a good landscaping option as they have attractive foliage and small colorful flowers. Some geranium cultivars grow as high as 2 ft. (60 cm) and have a spread of the same size.
To fill your garden with spring and summer purple flowers, plant geraniums in sunny areas of your garden.
Salvia is an herbaceous purple flowering plant that grows every year and produces showy small flowers all summer long.
This purple perennial herb loves to grow in hot sunny climates. The flowering stems grow upright and consist of needle-like leaves with small blossoms on them. Although purple is a common type of salvia, some varieties also produce blue, red, or white flowers.
Apart from producing attractive purple flowers every year, many grow salvia (Salvia officinalis) for its delicious taste. Sage (salvia) is a popular herb used in Mediterranean, British, and American cooking. You can also use sage for its medicinal properties.
If stunning bushy purple flowers is what you are after, then the perennial Veronica (Veronica spicata) is a great choice. Some varieties of this tall plant with purple flowers include ‘Royal Candles’ and Veronica ‘Purple Explosion.’
Purple Veronica cultivars have tall stems with long purple flowers on the end. Depending on the type of plant, the blossoms can look like dark purple spikes or large clumps of tiny purple flowers.
This low-maintenance plant flowers year after year and is hardy down to USDA zone 3. To really appreciate the stunning purple blooms, plant this perennial in full sun behind other smaller bedding plants.
Anemone is a group of plants that include perennial varieties which produce purple spring flowers.
The most common variety of purple anemone is the ‘Winter Windflower’ (Anemone blanda) with purple-blue petals and a striking yellow center. Other purple spring flowering varieties include the broad-leaved anemone (Anemone hortensis) with light violet star-shaped flowers.
To make sure this purple perennial blooms in the early spring, plant it in shady areas of your garden in rich, moist soil.
There are a number of tall purple perennials to choose from, but aster plants seem to be a favorite for sunny gardens.
The purple color of aster flowers is highly attractive to bees, butterflies and other pollinators. The purple or lilac daisy-shaped flowers sit on the top of long stems that can grow up to 8ft. (2.4 m) high. However, most varieties of this perennial are shorter.
The light purple petals are also quite attractive. Some aster cultivars have multilayered dark purple petals giving the flower head a puffy look.
If you have asters in your garden, you can expect purple blossoms to appear in late summer or the fall. This means that asters are one of the latest of the purple flowering plants to bloom.
Chrysanthemum is another type of purple perennial that blooms late in the summer. These plants produce bursts of purples, lilacs, and mauves when they flower in July and August.
Chrysanthemums are a flowering plant that come in many colors. Some types of “mums” with purple flowers include ‘Lynn’ which has two-tone lavender colors and a purple center, ‘Stargazer’ with dark lavender petals, and ‘Barbara’ with blooms that look like purple pompons.
Depending on the type of chrysanthemum, they grow between 1.5 and 3 ft. (45 – 90 cm) tall and have a spread of around 3 ft. (90 cm).
One reason why chrysanthemum perennials are so popular is for the sheer number of flowers from each plant. If you plant a number of varieties, you will have delightful purples, reds, yellows, and whites brightening your garden.
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