Gardeners Ultimate Plant List

Springtime brings out the gardener in just about everybody!

Eager to get outdoors and grow something, gardeners are continuously looking for the best varieties of plants for their gardens. Here’s a list of the top 100 plants every garden should have, according to the garden experts, florists, landscape architects and horticulturalists writing for the UK’s venerable Telegraph. Broken down by season, it’s a selection of the very best, most desirable flowers and shrubs for your garden.


Top 25 Spring Plants

  1. Lungwort ‘Diana Clare’ (Pulmonaria)
  2. Bishop’s hat ‘Sulphureum’ (Epimedium x versicolor)
  3. Wallflower ‘Bowles’s Mauve’ (Erysimum)
  4. Alpine wood fern (Dryopteris wallichiana)
  5. Siberian squill ‘Spring Beauty’ (Scilla siberica)
  6. Eastern cyclamen (Cyclamen coum)
  7. Downy clematis (Clematis macropetala)
  8. Arrowwood ‘Park Farm Hybrid’ (Viburnum x burkwoodii)
  9. ‘Blue Pearl’ (Crocus chrysanthus)
  10. Daffodil ‘Jetfire’ (Narcissus)
  11. ‘Ice Wings’ (Narcissus)
  12. ‘Pickwick’ (Crocus vernus)
  13. Gold-edged winter daphne ‘Aureomarginata’ (Daphne odora)
  14. Siberian bugloss ‘Jack Frost’ (Brunnera macrophylla)
  15. Tulip ‘Spring Green’
  16. Dog’s tooth violet ‘Pagoda’ (Erythronium)
  17. Tufted pansy ‘Alba’ (Viola cornuta)
  18. Wood anemone ‘Vestal’ (Anemone nemorosa)
  19. Bleeding heart ‘Bacchanal’
  20. Spurge (Euphorbia polychroma)
  21. Magnolia ‘Leonard Messel’ (Magnolia x loebneri)
  22. ‘Grandiceps’ (Polystichum setiferum)
  23. Spurge ‘Dixter’ (Euphorbia griffithii)
  24. Intermediate periwinkle (Vinca difformis)
  25. Grape hyacinth ‘Valerie Finnis’ (Muscari armeniacum)


Top 25 Summer Plants

  1. Allium ‘Purple Sensation’ (Allium hollandicum)
  2. Rose ‘Goldfinch’
  3. Carthusian Pink (Dianthus carthusianorum)
  4. Mexican fleabane (Erigeron karvinskianus)
  5. Masterwort (Astrantia major ‘Roma’)
  6. Oriental poppy ‘Karine’ (Papaver orientale)
  7. Rose ‘Madame Alfred Carrière’
  8. Clematis ‘Perle d’Azur’
  9. Peony ‘Festiva Maxima’ (Paeonia lactiflora)
  10. Milky bellflower ‘Prichard’s Variety’ (Campanula lactiflora)
  11. Catmint ‘Six Hills Giant’ (Nepeta)
  12. Marguerite Daisy ‘Susanna Mitchell’ (Anthemis)
  13. Penstemon ‘Andenken an Friedrich Hahn’ (syn. ‘Garnet’)
  14. Geranium Rozanne (‘Gerwat’)
  15. Geranium Patricia (‘Brempat’)
  16. Shrubby hare’s ear (Bupleurum fruticosum)
  17. Miss Willmott’s ghost (Eryngium giganteum)
  18. Buddleia ‘Pink Delight’
  19. Golden oats (Stipa gigantea)
  20. Foxglove ‘Sutton’s Apricot’ (Digitalis purpurea)
  21. Clematis ‘Purpurea Plena Elegans’
  22. Clematis ‘Etoile Violette’
  23. Lavender ‘Imperial Gem’ (Lavandula angustifolia)
  24. Rose ‘Buff Beauty’


Top 25 Autumn Plants

  1. Orpine ‘Purple Emperor’ (Sedum telephium)
  2. Sneezeweed ‘Sahin’s Early Flowerer’ (Helenium)
  3. Aster ‘Little Carlow’
  4. Michalmas daisy ‘Mönch’ (Aster x frikartii)
  5. Sunflower ‘Lemon Queen’ (Helianthus)
  6. Coneflower ‘Goldsturm’ (Rudbeckia fulgida)
  7. Hardy garden verbena (Verbena rigida)
  8. Chinese plumbago (Ceratostigma willmottianum)
  9. Red-hot poker ‘Tawny King’ (Kniphofia)
  10. Oriental fountain grass (Pennisetum orientale)
  11. Miscanthus sinensis ‘Silberfeder’
  12. White gaura (Gaura lindheimeri)
  13. Penstemon ‘Hidcote Pink’
  14. Monkshood ‘Arendsii’ (Aconitum carmichaelii)
  15. Smoke tree ‘Royal Purple’ (Cotinus coggygria)
  16. Japanese Anemone ‘Honorine Jobert’ (Anemone x hybrida)
  17. Anise-scented sage ‘Black and Blue’ (Salvia guaranitica)
  18. Argentinian vervain (Verbena bonariensis)
  19. Bergamot ‘Squaw’ (Monarda)
  20. Dahlia ‘David Howard’
  21. Montbretia ‘Severn Sunrise’ (Crocosmia)
  22. Coneflower ‘Magnus’ (Echinacea purpurea)
  23. Sedge (Carex testacea)
  24. Flat-stalked spindle tree (Euonymus planipes)
  25. Phlox ‘Monica Lynden-Bell’ (paniculata)


Top 25 Winter Plants

  1. Rosebud cherry ‘Autumnalis Rosea’ (Prunus x subhirtella)
  2. Sweet box (Sarcococca confusa)
  3. Fern-leaved clematis (Clematis cirrhosa var. balearica)
  4. Nepalese paper plant ‘Jacqueline Postill’ (Daphne bholua)
  5. Winter aconite (Eranthis hyemalis)
  6. Hellebores (Helleborus x ericsmithii)
  7. Himalayan birch ‘Grayswood Ghost’ (Betula utilis var. jacquemontii)
  8. Oregon grape ‘Winter Sun’ (Mahonia x media)
  9. Holly ‘Alaska’ (Ilex aquifolium)
  10. Snowdrop ‘S. Arnott’ (Galanthus)
  11. Flowering Japanese Apricot ‘Beni-chidori’ ‘Prunus mume’
  12. Honeysuckle ‘Winter Beauty’ (Lonicera x purpusii)
  13. Algerian iris ‘Mary Barnard’ (Iris unguicularis)
  14. Dogwood ‘Midwinter Fire’ (Cornus sanguinea)
  15. Perovskia ‘Blue Spire’ (Perovskia atriplicifolia)
  16. Edging box ‘Suffruticosa’ (Buxus sempervirens)
  17. Narcissus ‘Cedric Morris’
  18. Martin’s spurge (Euphorbia x martini)
  19. Christmas berry ‘Red Robin’ (Photinia x fraseri)
  20. Winter jasmine (Jasminum nudiflorum)
  21. Witch hazel ‘Pallida’ (Hamamelis x intermedia)
  22. Skimmia ‘Kew Green’ (Skimmia x confusa)
  23. Black mondo ‘Nigrescens’ (Ophiopogon planiscapus)
  24. Cotoneaster ‘Hybridus Pendulus’
  25. Box-leaf azara (Azara microphylla)

Still looking for your favorite? Check in the Plants Database.


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Learn how to Identify Plants With Garden Sign Markers or to Create a Reusable Label System for Your Garden with useful information from our other articles.

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