Shop all perennial plants
Perennials are plants that live for more than two years, as opposed to shorter lived annuals that live for one year and biennials that live for two years. They're distinct from shrubs and trees in that they have fleshy foliage with little or no woody growth and die back in the winter before springing back into life from the same set of roots each spring. They can be either short or long lived - perennials such as delphinium and lupines will last just 3-4 years, whilst most will live for around 15 years and some such as peonies can stay with you for a lifetime. Flowering periods are similarly diverse spanning anything from 2 weeks to 2-3 months with interest typically peaking from summer or early autumn. Some perennials are clump-forming, producing a tidy mound of neat foliage, whilst others such as gooseneck loosestrife will produce a more sprawling display and may need to be staked to prevent them from flopping over, particularly when in flower in the summer. These easy-to-grow, reliable stalwarts of the garden form the backbone of herbaceous and mixed borders. There is a huge range to choose from with varying shapes, sizes, styles and flowering periods.