Gardening Advice

Battle of the Buds: Annuals Versus Perennials

Garden catalogues and seed packets use terms words like annual and perennial, but don’t always provide an explanation. What do these terms mean? Why should you care? Read on to find out the difference in this “Battle of the Buds.”
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Perennials from my garden. Can you guess what they are? Leave a comment down below!

Spring has arrived in full force in the Midwest and for my family that means it is time to work in the garden. Along with our primary focus on vegetables, we also plant flowers. Not only do flowers add aesthetic value, planting them in strategic areas helps the pollinators (like bees) find our garden.

Garden catalogues and seed packets use terms words like annual and perennial, but don’t always provide an explanation. What do these terms mean? Why should you care? Read on to find out the difference in this “Battle of the Buds.”

Annual Versus Perennial

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Don’t let that innocent expression fool you. This cute little critter will treat your carefully planted perennials as snack-packs all winter long!

Annuals die during the winter season and must be replanted every year. This is a lot of effort—AKA sweat equity—on the part of the gardener to amp up that flower display. Perennials are planted once and come back every year, except when they are attacked by ground squirrels and other such critters that love to munch on the roots and bulbs like they are part of their own private winter larder.

Annuals produce more flowers and bloom for a longer period of time. They produce more flowers because they have just one season to make enough seeds to reproduce. Perennials generally bloom for a single season. Since they can survive for several years, they put more energy into growing strong roots and less energy into the amount of flowers they produce per plant.

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Sunflowers are annuals. So . . . many . . . seeds.

Should you pick annuals or perennials when planting your garden? If you want showy and colorful plants for a single season, choose annuals. If you want permanence (barring the aforementioned squirrel attacks) and as little maintenance as possible, choose perennials.

For a garden that has the best of both worlds, plant a mix of annual and perennial plants. You’ll have flowers throughout the growing season and a foundation of reliable plants that require very little effort.

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Praise for Heart & Mind:

“The author has managed to weave an intricate web about being true to yourself. One shouldn’t be guided or led by others. Above all, feel the magic in your own heart. As the fairy godmother believes sometimes it is best not to mess with destiny.” –Chief, USN Ret…VT Town—a Top 500 Reviewer on Amazon.com

Praise for The World In Front of Me:

“Picked up this short story because I noted it was previously published in Penumbra, which was a pretty high quality publication. And this story lived up to my expectations for a professional quality piece.

The story’s main idea reminded me a lot of the Lakeside community in Neil Gaimon’s American Gods, but I won’t say anymore about that for fear of giving away spoilers. But fans of Gaimon should really enjoy this story. Fans of strong women who make tough choices should enjoy this as well”—KSluss—Review on Amazon.com

Praise for Going Home:

“This is an excellent short story that is full of surprises for the reader. Martial law is about to be imposed in the colony.

A secret room, trips on a train and a clandestine meeting are all part of this superb short story.

Most highly recommended”—Off Grid . . . And Loving It—a Top 500 Reviewer on Amazon.com

Praise for Wonderland:

“The writing is beautiful, the characters are complex and thoroughly developed and the story is fascinating. All of it together creates a world you don’t want to leave when the book ends. I am so glad I discovered this author and I cannot wait for her next book”—Mary—Review on Amazon.com

Read excerpts from all of the books written by Chris Pavesic on Amazon.

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