10 Types of Perennial Wildflowers

Learn about the various types of perennial wildflowers and how to successfully grow them with this gardening guide.

Milky Bellflower is Perennial Meadow Wildflower DK - Simple Steps to Success: Lawns and Groundcover © 2012 Dorling Kindersley Limited

Milky Bellflower (Campanula latifolia)

Also popular as a border plant, milky bellflower has an upright style and has purple-mauve, bell-shaped flowers. The serrated foliage is similar to an elongated nettle leaf, although it doesn't sting. It prefers hedgerows and a dappled woodland habitat. This fully hardy plant prefers full to partial sun and well-drained to moist soil. H: 3 feet (1 m); S: 24 inches (60 cm)

Common Knapweed is Perennial Meadow Wildflower DK - Simple Steps to Success: Lawns and Groundcover © 2012 Dorling Kindersley Limited

Common Knapweed (Centaurea nigra)

Common knapweed produces attractive pinkish-purple, thistle-like flowers and long, dissected leaves. Ideal for a wildlife garden, it is a useful source of nectar for insects, while its seedheads provide food for birds during the winter. This fully hardy plant prefers full to partial sun and well-drained to moist soil. H: 32 inches (80 cm); S: 16 inches (40 cm)

Greater Knapweed Attracts Bees and Butterflies

Greater Knapweed (Centaurea scabiosa)

A popular nectar source for bees and butterflies, greater knapweed bears pinkish-purple, thistle-like flowerheads held high over its long and often deeply divided foliage. It is very similar to common knapweed, but larger and with a wilder look. This fully hardy plant prefers full to partial sun and well-drained to moist soil. H: 3 feet (1 m); S: 24 inches (60 cm)

Wild Carrot is Perennial Meadow Wildflower DK - Simple Steps to Success: Lawns and Groundcover © 2012 Dorling Kindersley Limited

Wild Carrot (Daucus carota)

Similar in appearance to cow parsley, wild carrot is commonly grown as a biennial. It bears lacy, umbelliferous flowers that are usually white but occasionally have a pinkish tinge. It prefers poor, free-draining soil; its taproot makes it drought-tolerant. This fully hardy plant prefers full to partial sun and well-drained to moist soil. H: 30 inches (75 cm); S: 28 inches (70 cm)

Ladys Bedstraw is Perennial Meadow Wildflower DK - Simple Steps to Success: Lawns and Groundcover © 2012 Dorling Kindersley Limited

Lady's Bedstraw (Galium verum)

Lady's bedstraw is an attractive plant, producing dense clusters of golden flowers held high on its unusual square stems. It is a low, scrambling plant that sends down roots wherever it comes into contact with the ground. The whole plant smells of hay. This fully hardy plant prefers full to partial sun and well-drained to moist soil. H: 14 inches (35 cm); S: 8 inches (20 cm)

Meadow Cranesbill is Perennial Meadow Wildflower DK - Simple Steps to Success: Lawns and Groundcover © 2012 Dorling Kindersley Limited

Meadow Cranesbill (Geranium pratense)

Meadow cranesbill, a wild form of geranium, bears attractive, veined, violet blue or white flowers and deeply divided, five- to seven-lobed leaves. It is frequently found in rough grassland, damp hay meadows, and lightly grazed pastures. This fully hardy plant prefers full to partial sun and well-drained to moist soil. H: 30 inches (75 cm); S: 20 inches (50 cm)

Field Scabious Food Source for Bee and Butterfly DK - Simple Steps to Success: Lawns and Groundcover © 2012 Dorling Kindersley Limited

Field Scabious (Knautia arvensis)

Field scabious is a hairy biennial or perennial, bearing flowers in a range of colors from violet blue to pale lavender. The pin-cushion-shaped blooms are held high on a mass of branched stems. It is a popular source of nectar for butterflies and bees. This fully hardy plant prefers full to partial sun and well-drained to moist soil. H: 24 inches (60 cm); S: 20 inches (50 cm)

Scrambling Meadow Pea Bears Bright Yellow Blooms DK - Simple Steps to Success: Lawns and Groundcover © 2012 Dorling Kindersley Limited

Scrambling Meadow Vetchling (Lathyrus pratensis)

Part of the pea family, scrambling meadow vetchling bears attractive yellow flowers throughout the summer that develop into black pea pods. The stems carry pairs of leaves and tendrils. It is commonly found in hedgerows and rough grassland. This fully hardy plant prefers full to partial sun and well-drained to moist soil. H: 20 inches (50 cm); S: 16 inches (40 cm)

Ox Eye Daisy is Perennial Meadow Wildflower DK - Simple Steps to Success: Lawns and Groundcover © 2012 Dorling Kindersley Limited

Ox-Eye Daisy (Leucanthemum vulgare)

A common site on banks, berms, and disturbed ground, the ox-eye daisy bears white flowers with deep yellow disc florets in the centers on single stems. The foliage is dark green, spoon-shaped, toothed, and forms a rosette at the base of the plant. This fully hardy plant prefers full to partial sun and well-drained to moist soil. H: 30 inches (75 cm); S: 16 inches (40 cm)

Toad Flax is Perennial Meadow Wildflower DK - Simple Steps to Success: Lawns and Groundcover © 2012 Dorling Kindersley Limited

Toadflax (Linaria vulgaris)

Distinctive and attractive, toadflax bears tall, cylindrical spikes of pale yellow flowers with deep egg yolk-colored center — it is also commonly known as butter and eggs due to these contrasting colors. The foliage is narrow and grayish-green. This fully hardy plant prefers full to partial sun and well-drained to moist soil. H: 16 inches (40 cm); S: 12 inches (30 cm)

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