Top New Perennials for 2017

We take a look at the top new perennials heading your way for 2017.

Agapanthus 'Neverland'

A bright new lily of the Nile. Sporting yellow-and-chartreuse variegated foliage is the start of this new variety's appeal. The foliage maintains a nice, tidy clump that stays below 12 inches tall. On top of that, these plants wave wands of sky blue flowers all season long.

Plant name: Agapanthus 'Neverland' PPAF

Growing conditions: full sun to part shade

Size: 18 inches tall by 12 inches wide

Zone: 8

Grow it with: tufted hairgrass and salvia

Photo credit: Garden Debut

Amsonia 'Storm Cloud'

A breakthrough in native plant breeding, this new variety of Bluestar is a knockout! Foliage emerges almost black in spring and ages to dark green with silver veins. It then begins the real show with numerous clusters of starry blue flowers and continues to bloom for weeks. Afterward, it maintains a great presence in any garden and has great heat and humidity tolerance. It stands up to deer as well!

Plant name Amsonia tabernaemontana 'Storm Cloud'

Growing conditions: full sun to part shade

Size: 24-30 inches tall by 38-42 inches wide

Zone: 4-9

Grow it with: hardy hibiscus and Shasta daisy

Photo credit: Walters Gardens Inc. 

Andropogon 'Blackhawks'

A big bluestem, 'Blackhawks' has deep purple to almost black foliage. Not only is this foliage darker than most, it colors up much earlier than other bluestems. At 5 feet tall and no flopping, this grass is a beacon of color in a perennial garden.

Plant name: Andropogon gerardii 'Blackhawks' PPAF

Growing conditions: full sun

Size: 5 feet tall

Zone: 4-9

Grow it with: asters and goldenrods

Photo credit: Intrinsic Perennial Gardens Inc. 

Coreopsis 'Gilded Lace'

What sets this coreopsis apart is its sheer size contrasted with its delicate, lacy foliage. This is not your average coreopsis. At a whopping 4-5 feet tall, this is sure to stun, especially with its impressive bloom time—June through October! It's also great for pollinators and very disease resistant.

Plant name: Coreopsis 'Gilded Lace'

Growing conditions: full sun

Size: 4-5 feet tall

Zone: 5-9

Grow it with: agastache and Culver's root

Photo credit: Mt. Cuba Center

UpTick coreopsis Yellow & Red

One of four in the new UpTick™ line of coreopsis coming in from Darwin Perennials, this series boasts bigger blooms, longer flower time, and compact habit. With blooms starting as soon as late spring, these plants keep the show going all the way through late summer. Their short size also makes them great as a container plant as well.

Plant name: Coreopsis 'Baluptowed'

Growing conditions: full sun

Size: 12-14 inches tall and wide

Zone: 5-9

Grow it with: salvia and alliums

Photo credit: Darwin Perennials

Crinum 'Aurora Glorialis'

A flower to make your friends and neighbors jealous! This rare beauty is one of the most cold-hardy crinums around. Not only that, but the flowers change color as they age, creating a multicolor show of white through deep rose. The foliage also creates a statement with steel blue sculptural leaves.

Plant name: Crinum bulbispermum 'Aurora Glorialis'

Growing Conditions: full sun

Size: 3 feet tall and wide

Zone: 6-9

Grow it with: creeping phlox and roses

Photo credit: Jenks Farmer

Echinacea 'Playful Meadow Mama'

A novel coneflower with two-tone blooms! This variety sets large blooms in a deep, rich pink with quilled edges that look as if they have been dipped in bleach. Maintaining a nice height of only 24 inches, these coneflowers are great addition to any garden orcontainer.

Plant name: Echinacea purpurea 'Playful Meadow Mama'

Growing conditions: full sun

Size: 24 inches tall

Zone: 4-9

Grow it with: little bluestems and Russian sage

Photo credit: Plants Nouveau

Kniphofia 'Poco Sunset'

The newest addition to the Poco series of red-hot pokers, Sunset has bicolor red and orange blooms that add fire to your garden. This series is known for its vigorous habit, long bloom time, and compact plants with pleasant grassy foliage. A knockout for dry areas and a treat for hummingbirds as well.

Plant name: Kniphofia 'Poco Sunset'

Growing conditions: full sun

Size: 16 inches tall and wide

Zone: 6-9

Grow it with: sedums and blue gramagrass

Photo credit: Terra Nova Nurseries

Monarda Bee-You 'Bee-Happy'

A compact bee balm that adds buzz to your garden. This variety is a great compact selection that is mildew free! No more white powdered leaves taking away from the beatiful display. Plant some to attract all sorts of beneficials to your space with a promise of plenty of nectar.

Plant name: Monarda Bee-You 'Bee-Happy'

Growing conditions: full sun

Size: 15-18 inches tall by 12-15 inches wide

Zone: 5-9

Grow it with: nepeta and veronica

Photo credit: Plants Nouveau

Muscari armeniacum 'Helena'

This early-spring grape hyacinth's striking blue flowers fade to white puffs at the tip. Small bulbs like these are a great addition around plants and at the front of garden beds. Not only does 'Helena' look like little clusters of grapes, it also smells like them, too!

Plant name: Muscari armeniacum 'Helena'

Growing conditions: full sun to part shade

Size: 4-6 inches

Zone: 4-9

Grow it with: peonies and sedges

Photo credit: Brent and Becky's Bulbs

Perovskia 'Blue Steel'

Finally a more consistent solution to everyone's favorite Russian sage! 'Blue Steel' is one of the first consistent seed strains available, producing aromatic silvery foliage with its trademark clouds of denim blue flowers. As the name implies, this plant is tough as steel! Very drought and heat tolerant, it grows in some of your toughest spots.

Plant name: Perovskia atriplicifolia 'Blue Steel'

Growing conditions: full sun

Size: 30-36 inches tall by 20-38 inches wide

Zone: 4-9

Grow it with: black-eyed Susan and yarrow

Photo credit: PanAmerican Seed

Rudbeckia 'American Gold Rush'

A much improved form of the classic 'Goldstrum', 'American Gold Rush' has what it takes to be the new benchmark of black-eyed Susan. Plants max out at about 22 inches tall and form a round dome of pure yellow flowers. Blooming begins in late July, and the gold rush continues all through September. The best part? 'American Gold Rush' is extremely resistant to Septoria, the fungus that takes out many of the older varieties.

Plant name: Rudbeckia x 'American Gold Rush' PPAF

Growing conditions: full sun

Size: 22 inches tall and wide

Zone: 4-9

Grow it with: bluestems and asters

Photo credit: Intrinsic Perennial Gardens Inc. 

Sedum SunSparkler® 'Wildfire'

The next in a wave of sedum breeding that you won't want to miss! 'Wildfire' is a flashy offshoot of 'Firecracker,' with shiny red leaves with hot pink edge. This tough little plant is super vigorous, with up to 100 or more crowns from one plant each spring. If you can't find a home for 'Wildfire' in your garden, it'll be just as happy in a pot.

Plant name: Sedum SunSparkler 'Wildfire' PPAF

Growing conditions: full sun

Size: 6 inches tall by 18 inches wide

Zone: 4-9

Grow it with: cacti and other succulents

Photo credit: Sun Sparkler Sedums

Sempervivum Chick Charms 'Gold Nugget'

Owning this sempervivum really is like striking gold. 'Gold Nugget' is the world's first gold foliaged sempervivum! A part of the new Chick Charms series of collectible sempervivums, it sports red edges on its leaves. The best part? It's hardy! Be sure to snatch one up before the rush sets in!

Plant name: Sempervivum 'Gold Nugget'

Growing conditions: full sun

Size: 6 inches tall

Zone: 4-9

Grow it with: sedums and ice plants

Photo credit: Chick Charms

Dianthus Fruit Punch 'Spiked Punch'

A new color in the Fruit Punch series, this dianthus will find a home in any garden. The compactness of this variety makes it a great candidate for pots or for edging gardens. The heavily fringed petals of glowing fuchsia blooms look radiant against the clean steel blue foliage.

Plant name: Dianthus 'Spiked Punch'

Growing conditions: full sun to part shade

Size: 6-8 inches tall by 12-14 inches wide

Zone: 4-9

Grow it with: creeping phlox and veronica

Photo credit: Walters Gardens Inc. 

Heuchera Northern Exposure™ Red

This new line of coral bells from the Heuchera experts at Terra Nova has been bred specifically for toughness in the landscape. Northern Exposure™ Red has no-nonsense dark red to burgundy leaves that form a substantial mound of foliage for great impact. They have also bred in plenty of disease resistance and cold hardiness to boot!

Plant Name: Heuchera 'TNHEUNER'

Growing Conditions: part to full sun

Size: 14 inches tall by 20 inches wide

Zone: 4-9

Grow it with: Hellebores and pulmonaria

Photo Credit: Terra Nova Nurseries

Lavandula 'Wee One'

Lavender seems to be seeing a resurgence in breeding, and 'Wee One' certainly fills a niche. With its small stature, coming in at under a foot tall, 'Wee One' is a great space saver if you love the smell of lavender but don't have the room for its bigger cousins. It's also a tough little guy with excellent heat and cold tolerance.

Plant Name: Lavandula angustifolia 'Wee One'

Growing Conditions: full sun

Size: 8-10 inches tall by 12-15 inches wide

Zone: 5-10

Grow it with: cacti and red hot pokers

Photo Credit: Plant Select

Hibiscus 'Ballet Slippers'

'Ballet Slippers' is a great new additon to the hardy hibiscus lineup. Attractive upright plants with plenty of side branching set the stage for quit a show. Come late summer, this stunner doesn't dissappoint. Huge 7 inch blooms are a pristine white with a dark crimson eye. The overlapping petals are edged in the faintest blush pink, creating a pinwheel effect. When at it's peak, the entire plant is covered in blooms, not just the top.

Plant Name: Hibiscus 'Ballet Slippers'

Growing Conditions: full sun to part shade

Size: 4 feet tall by 4.5-5 feet wide

Zone: 4-9

Grow it with: baptisia and culver's root

Photo Credit: Walters Gardens, Inc. 

Heucherella 'Plum Cascade'

What do you get when you mix Heuchera and Tiarella? Heucherella! And in this case, the first ever purple one! Deeply lobed leaves of silvery purple foliage trail gracefully out of mixed containers and across the ground. To top it off, foamy light pink flowers peak out of the foliage throughout the summer as well! This vigorous grower is a great addition to a shady garden.

Plant Name: Heucherella 'Plum Cascade'

Growing Conditions: Shade to part shade

Size: 9 inches tall by 32 inches wide

Zone: 4-9

Grow it with: Hostas and epimediums

Photo Credit: Terra Nova Nurseries

Cosmos 'Black Magic'

With a name like 'Black Magic,' you know there has to be something tempting about this plant. Burgundy to almost black velvety blooms emit an intoxicating chocolatey-vanilla scent. This is something you have to smell to believe. Make sure you plant one of these near your deck, or in a container, so you can easily enjoy the smell all summer long.

Plant Name: Cosmos atrosanguineus 'Black Magic'

Growing Conditions: full sun

Size: 24 inches tall and wide

Zone: 8-10

Grow it with: Salvia and lavender

Photo Credit: Jelitto Perennial Seeds

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