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Top 5 Perennials in the Southeast

Verbena is a beautiful, draught-hardy perennial.
Verbena is a beautiful, draught-hardy perennial.

­If you want a casual, no-fuss relationship with a plant, consider verbena. These perennials hate it when you pamper them -- their main problems result when people overwater or over-feed them, making them perfect for a dry area. They do require one housekeeping task -- the dreaded deadheading, as many flowering­ plants do. If you want your verbena to keep flow­ering, you will have to continually cut or snap off the dead flowers so new ones can blossom.

There are more than 200 types of verbena, and they are so easy to grow; they can be easily started from seeds [source:]. They might be a bit slow to start, but starting them from seeds is an inexpensive option to buying the plants and transplanting them to your garden. They also come in a variety of colors, including red, pink, purple, mauve, white, blue and peach -- or multicolored. Within those many colors, you can get a variety of pale colors or bright bold ones. Verbena's many varieties almost certainly have what you're looking for, all tucked inside big clusters of flowers. Just like the coreopsis, these clusters of flowers work well in a variety of spots in your landscaping including borders, window boxes, hanging baskets and even rock gardens.

­From butterfly attractors to herbal tea, verbena does a lot more than sit, look pretty and survive droughts. These pretty flowers can also attract hummingbirds and other bright birds to fill your yard. Several species of verbena oil are good enough to trade, and are even used in expensive perfumes and candles.

Now you have a good list to start from when planning out your garden and landscaping­ whether your humid land is sunny or shady -- and even if it's not so humid. For more ideas, take a walk around the neighborhood to see what your neighbors are planting after you visit the links on the next page.