Absalon is one of the rarest tulips grown at Mount Vernon. It features yellow flames on maroon petals and is one of the few remaining truly broken tulips.
Absalon is one of the rarest tulips grown at Mount Vernon. It features yellow flames on maroon petals and is one of the few remaining truly broken tulips.
This unique plant looks more suited to a desert climate, but it is found wild up and down the east coast. Its strappy leaves are crowned by huge spikes of creamy white flowers every other year.
This upright yellow-flowering plant, with its distinctive odor, is a classic of the summer border.
These tiny blue flowers are some of the most shade tolerant of the spring flower bulbs.
This plant is ideally used in the front of the flower border and is prone to reseeding. It was a common garden plant in the 18th century.
These sweet-smelling golden flowers are ideal for the front of the border in spring when bulbs are blooming.
All parts of this bold shrub are fragrant. It particularly deserves its name for the profusion of amethyst purple berries borne on its long branches.
Bee Balm is a tall summer-blooming perennial with brilliant red flowers subtended by a whorl of showy, red-tinged, leafy bracts. The aromatic leaves can be used for tea, but are susceptible to mildew, so this plant needs good air circulation. A member of the mint family, bee balm spreads readily by rhizomes…
A cottage garden favorite, black-eyed susan features masses of ferociously yellow flowers that attract butterflies. They are incredibly hardy and tolerate a wide variety of conditions, making them ideal for naturalizing.
Blackberry lilies are named for their glossy black seeds which look nearly identical to an actual blackberry. They have beautiful orange flowers with darker spots on long graceful stems above strappy green foliage.
This unique plant features bright blue-purple flowers on tall green stalks followed by interesting black seedpods. It forms a deep taproot and does not transplant well, so be certain of its location before planting.
Blue Flag is a petite double tulip with flouncy purple petals. Its short stature makes it ideally suited for the front of the border.
Boxwood are the quintessential southern garden hedge plant. They are popular for use in knot gardens, parterres, edging, and as topiaries. While the historic English boxwood (Buxus suffruiticosa) are especially susceptible to a devastating and widespread blight caused by the fungus Cylindrocladium buxicola…
This elegant annual forms an attractive seedhead after blooming and is ideal for the middle of the border in the spring garden. It self-sows reliably, but does not transplant well.
Airy blue flowers form a stunning mass mid-border late in the season when many other flowers are fading. In southern climates, this plant self-sows with vigor.
Brown-eyed Susans form masses of bright gold flowers above dark green foliage. It will flop without a midseason trim to keep it from getting too tall. It is ideal for naturalizing because it reseeds readily.
Butter and Eggs is pale yellow double daffodil with many frilly petals. Its height makes it well suited to the middle of the flower border.
This plant features brilliant orange flowers that light up the garden and are attractive to pollinators, including monarchs and honeybees.
This petite, graceful gladiolus features bright pink flowers on long, elegant stems. It is somewhat hardier than most modern gladioli.
Canterbury bells are a common sight in cottage gardens. Their bright purple flowers add a richness of color to the pastels of late spring and early summer. They are a short-lived perennial and often need to be replanted.
The vibrant red blooms of the cardinal flower makes it an ideal plant for the shady summer garden. It reseeds readily and is ideal for naturalizing and sharing with friends.
Give this shrub ample room to sprawl, as it tends to sucker when it's happy. The unusual chocolatey maroon flowers give off a spicy sweet fragrance which is echoed in cut twigs and leaves.
This Gallica class rose is full-flowered with luscious petals of a deep crimson. It has fragrant flowers in the spring.
High Mallow is an upright, bushy plant with magenta flowers and darker purple stripes. It reseeds readily and naturalizes quickly in the garden.
The pink, purple, or white flowers of this cheerful daisy are an excellent midsummer accent in any flower garden.
Spires of pink and white bracts crown this large-leafed salvia. It has been used as an herb since the Middle Ages and is currently used as flavoring for wines, vermouth, and liqueurs.
This elegant climbing rose sports large pink flowers from spring until nearly Christmas. It is lightly fragrant and easily trained to a graceful climbing habit against walls or over trellises.
A sturdy long-blooming annual, this impressive plant is ideal for the back of the border. Its bright flowers come in many colors, including hot pink, peach, deep rose, yellow, and red.
This cute perennial forms small masses of green foliage with bright yellow or red flowers in the early spring. It is particularly sweet when planted with bulbs or other spring ephemerals in the front of the border.
Cranberrybush has stunning white flowers reminiscent of a hydrangea, which makes up for its somewhat coarse texture and stiffly upright growth.
Crocuses cheerfully herald the coming spring with bright yellow flowers. They naturalize easily in gardens, offering clumps which grow larger year by year.
This large bulb has striking orange flowers borne on long lily-like flowers in spring. It is best placed on its side when planted to prevent rotting and then left undisturbed.
A fragrant spring bloomer, this perennial naturalizes readily. Its white flowers are refreshing among all the pink and blue spring blooms. This flower cuts nicely for pleasant smelling bouquets.
This unique late-blooming bulb sports maroon flower-heads, for which it earns its common of drumstick allium.
Duc van Tol Red and Yellow is a petite tulip that does best when planted near the front of the border.
Duc van Tol Rose is a petite tulip with pointed pink and white petals.
Early Louisiana is a petite yellow daffodil that is well suited to naturalizing. It does well towards the front of the flower border.
Eglantine roses are large and sprawling, with single pale pink flowers in late spring and early summer. They are strongly apple-scented and their hips are popular for use in tea. This rose may be restrained by growing on posts or trellises to control its long, thorny canes.
This plant's large leaves add a unique texture to the back of the border, while its yellow flowers provide late season interest. Elecampane is used in France and Switzerland to make absinthe.
Cascading blue flowers on arching stems slowly naturalize in the garden.
With its cute white flower, this petite daisy makes a charming addition to the garden. It is usually grown as a short-lived perennial, but it will reseed if permitted.
Fragrant spires of dark purple flowers above silvery foliage light up the garden border in summer. If trimmed after blooming, they will flower again. Their flowers may be used in sachets or as flavoring in baking and drinks.
This crocus-like lemon yellow bulb is a surprising and unusual find in the fall garden. They perform best in sunny, protected locations.
Flaming Parrot is a favorite here at Mount Vernon, with its bold red stripes on fringed yellow petals. It is a tall, late-blooming tulip that does well in the middle of the border.
The Florentine tulip is a charming yellow species tulip, with its bright flowers held on long, elegant stems.
The aromatic flowers on this dwarf shrub are redolent of honey. It is a plant of multi-season interest with its brilliant fall foliage and unique branching.
Named for the time of day the bloom opens, four o'clocks will attract hummingbirds and nocturnal pollinators to your garden. This bushy plant reseeds readily, producing hundreds of large black seeds that resemble hand grenades.
Wands of bell-shaped flowers ascend from a broad, woolly basal rosette. This common cottage garden flower has an important role in the manufacture of heart medicine.
French marigolds are iconic garden plants with distinctly fragrant leaves. The flowers are single, semi-double, double, or crested in shades of yellow, orange, or red, and can also be bi-colored. When planted in the vegetable garden, marigolds can repel certain pests, such as white flies on tomatoes…
This dazzling plant blooms in masses of yellow flowers with deep burgundy stripes and is the star of the fall garden.
Garden phlox has long been a staple of the perennial border, providing height and bright blooms at the back of the bed. The pink flowers are fragrant and attractive to butterflies and hummingbirds.
Irises add interesting texture to the spring garden with strappy leaves and unique flowers, nicely accenting the later blooming flower bulbs. They grow to form large clumps which are easily divided and spread around the garden.
This magenta gem is well suited to the front of the border. Its lush blooms are attractive to butterflies, and they hold their color well when cut for use in dried arrangements.
Artichokes have large silvery green leaves that make them a striking addition to the garden. Their flower buds are traditionally used for culinary purposes, but if allowed to open offer large, brilliant purple flowers.
A mid-border plant, this pink or lavender flower can flop, but is an attractive addition to the spring garden.
An unusual flower for the summer garden, these blue thistle-like blooms add a unique texture. If cut back after blooming, they will send up new flowers. They make excellent dried and cut flowers.
This large-flowered, cheerful plant is perfect for dry, difficult spots. It self-sows readily in variations of orange, yellow, and gold.
Golden Standard is a brilliant red and yellow broken tulip. Its vibrant flowers bring light to the middle of the border.
Soft silvery foliage, which somewhat resembles French lavender, gives this plant its common name of lavender cotton. It is a good edging plant in sunny, well-drained spots. Santolina was commonly used medicinally and can be used to ward off insects.
This tall, late blooming perennial adds a pleasant blue to shady glades in the summer. Native to Virginia, it is often found along stream banks and in wetland areas. It self seeds enthusiastically.
One of the most cold tolerant hibiscuses, this plant has pale pink flowers with a red eye. It adds an interesting texture to the summer border.
Helmar is a yellow and red tulip. Its red flames mimic the pattern of some of the broken tulips of the tulip mania.
Hollyhocks are old-fashioned cottage garden favorites for their height and cheerful flowers in a wide range of colors. Most require staking to support their heavy stems.
Honesty is an old fashioned plant with briliant pink flowers that give way to paper-thin silvery seedpods, hence its many common names.
The Hoop Petticoat is one of the smallest daffodils grown at Mount Vernon and is often crowded towards the front of the border for ease of viewing. It has unique flowers with large bells and slender, petite petals.
This versatile hydrangea tolerates a wide variety of conditions and is ideal for borders or natural areas. It benefits from an annual pruning in late winter to prevent the heavy blooms from flopping.
This delightful little flower is a harbinger of spring in many gardens, but also adds charm to a fall or winter garden depending on your region. The flowers are edible and can be used to wonderful effect on cakes and in salads.
This voluptuous annual is grown for its showy multicolored foliage in shades of green, yellow, and red.
Keizerskroon is a bold yellow and red tulip that has a strong presence in the spring garden at Mount Vernon. Its colorful flowers are well suited for the middle of the border.
Lac van Rijn has striking white and deep pink flowers that add dramatic appeal to the spring garden.
This sweet white and pink tulip is an elegant mid-border charmer. The white and pink petals open to reveal a nearly pure white interior.
This silver-leafed groundcover does best in well-drained soil, but tolerates adverse conditions. Its purple flowers are attractive to honeybees and bumblebees.
Lantana is a colorful, shrubby annual with masses of flowers in shades of orange, yellow, and pink. Its leaves give off a distinctive smell and it produces bluish-black seeds. Lantana is commonly used as a bedding plant because of its long bloom season.
A favorite in the Mount Vernon gardens, this annual reseeds readily. Its pink, blue, and white flowers add height to the spring border.
This feathery flower blooms in shades of blue, white, and pink, and reseeds easily, but does not transplant well. It is noted for its interesting seedpods.
Love-lies-bleeding is an elegant cottage garden plant with cascading crimson flowers that are excellent for the summer border and as a cut flower.
Bright orange flowers offer a sharp contrast to the pinks and purples that proliferate in the early summer border. Maltese cross reseeds fairly easily, but can be choked out by more aggressive perennials.
Maximus is a standard among daffodils for its height and large yellow blooms. It does well in the middle of the border where it can be easily seen.
Mock oranges are common in older gardens, although they are regaining popularity with the introduction of dwarf and double-flowering cultivars. Richly fragrant, they offer a profusion of star-shaped flowers with yellow centers.
This late blooming perennial adds height and colorful spires to the end of summer shade garden. It prefers afternoon shade in the southern garden, but will tolerate sun further north.
A sprawling annual herb, nasturtiums have long been a charming kitchen garden plant. Their flowers, leaves, and seeds are all edible, and add a peppery bite to salads.
The pink and purple flowers of asters add color and height to the late summer garden. Due to their spreading habit they will naturalize when planted in the garden. A mid-spring trim will delay bloom time and help keep them restrained.
This towering perennial is crowned with clusters of brilliant purple flowers. The size can be kept in check by a mid-spring pruning.
A fluffier flower sets this columbine apart from the simpler native type. It has cheerful magenta and white flowers on tall stems and reseeds readily.
This tall Virginia native has spires of bright pink flowers and can be seen growing along waterways and woodland trails. It makes an excellent addition the back of the border, but be prepared for some spreading. It does not earn its name by staying in one place, but due to the ability to manipulate…
Odorus Flore Pleno is a medium to small daffodil with double yellow flowers. It is strongly fragrant.
Cheerful red flowers make this late spring to early summer perennial a showstopper. It can be difficult to get started, but once established,poppies are a reliable old-fashioned favorite.
Herbaceous, shrub-like plants bear single or double flowers in shades of pink and cream. They are an old-fashioned favorite in East Coast gardens.
This tall spring bulb is crowned by a spike of maroon flowers above gray-green foliage and makes a striking addition to the spring garden. The bulb itself is strongly odoriferous which prevents the depredations of rodents.
The Pheasant's Eye daffodil is a clear white daffodil featuring a yellow cup with a red ring. It is one of the later blooming daffodils and it does best towards the middle of the border.
These airy, colorful flowers are mildly fragrant and a pleasant addition to the flower border.
This native perennial has vibrant magenta flowers which add contrast to the overwhelming yellows and reds of the summer garden. The showy daisy-like flowers borne on stiff stems attract goldfinches if left to go to seed.
Red Hue is a unique tulip, featuring pointed red petals with green centers.
The rhododendron is an evergreen plant with large, lush pinkish purple blossoms in the spring.
This old-fashioned hyacinth has a sparser, more delicate flower than the modern types, but it is much more likely to stick around in the garden. It resists flopping under its own weight and is known to naturalize.
Rosa Mundi is a compact rose which features a profusion of bright striped flowers in the spring. The flowers are fragrant, and this old hardy rose shrugs off most pest problems, making them an easy favorite in the garden.
Rose campion features soft silvery mounds of foliage graced with stalks of stunning pink or white flowers in the late spring and early summer. This short-lived perennial or biennial self-seeds readily, forming large colonies if left unchecked.
Shining white flowers are attractive to pollinators and light up the garden. This type of hibiscus is fairly hardy in northern regions.
This plant is the largest hibiscus grown at Mount Vernon, as well as the longest flowering. Its brilliant red blooms are a bold statement in the summer border. It is native to the swamps and marshes of Alabama, Florida, and Georgia.
Scotch rose is aggressively thorny but makes up for it with a profusion of white blooms. We recommend a thorn-proof hat when working in the vicinity of this rose! It offers a second show in the fall with showy maroon hips.
Seventeen Sisters is a multi-flowered daffodil which features many small white flowers with yellow cups held on stiffly upright stems. It is very fragrant.
Thick clumps of spiky foliage and bright purple or blue flowers are perfect for mid-border planting. Like their German cousins, these benefit from division so they don't grow hollow in the middle.
Silver standard is a beautiful tulip, with white petals boldly splashed with pink streaks.
These dainty bell-shaped flowers in shades of maroon and white with faint checkered patterns perch atop slender arching stems. They prefer to be grown in cool moist sites.
This colorful cool season annual is a charmer in the middle of the flower border during the spring and fall.
Sweet white flowers naturalize easily in lawns or garden beds. This early bloomer is known for poking through the snow as early as February.
Spiderwort has grassy foliage and interesting purple blossoms, but tends to flop after flowering. It does best in shady locations and benefits from a good haircut after blooming.
This clove-scented flower flourishes in cool weather and makes an excellent cut flower.
The Swan's Neck daffodil is a white daffodil that keeps its flowers bent toward the earth. It is fairly small and should be planted close to the front for the best viewing opportunities.
Dense mounds of tiny fragrant white flowers form a spreading carpet under large perennials and annuals in the spring border.
This old-fashioned biennial with its cheerful pink and white blossoms in the late spring is a mainstay of cottage gardens.
Featuring airy foliage and golden flowers, this native plant is an attractive addition to the front of the border. It spreads by runners and is easily divided to share with your friends and neighbors. It is native to Fairfax County, Virginia.
This summer blooming perennial has strap-like leaves and large orange flowers. Because it naturalizes easily, this daylily can be commonly seen in roadside ditches and marking the sites of old outhouses.
Tournesol Red and Yellow is a short double tulip that does well at the front of the flower border.
Twin Sisters lives up to its name, with each stem bearing two small white and yellow flowers.
This umbelliferous perennial is attractive to bees and other pollinators. It is mildly fragrant. Valerian is an excellent addition to the back of the garden and it reseeds readily.
Van Sion is a bright yellow daffodil streaked with green. It is double, with many softly pointed petals.
A harbinger of spring, emerging foliage is deep purple but quickly turns green, and is followed by terminal clusters of pendulous, trumpet-shaped blue flowers. Virginia bluebells will rapidly colonize in moist shady areas. They are herbaceous perennials, which means that foliage dies to the ground as…
Wallflowers are a charming spring bloomer of exceptional hardiness. With yellow and red flowers, this cheerful annual adds vibrancy to the front and middle of the flower border.
Wapen van Leiden is a lovely white tulip brushed with pink. It is well suited to the middle of the border.
A more delicate species than its red-flowered cousin, bergamot has lovely lavender flowers and a more graceful look. It is attractive to bees, butterflies, and hummingbirds.
Wild columbines have dainty red and yellow flowers on long stems above clumps of bright green foliage. They self-seed reliably to form vigorous naturalized colonies.
This unusual early bulb offers small sunny yellow flowers in March when little else is blooming. In southern zones they benefit from light shade.
A native of the eastern U.S., this spreading woodland plant has sweet blue flowers, which look wonderful at the front of the spring border. They bloom at the same time as tulips, violas, and other early spring ephemerals.