Document Type


Publication Date



perennial flowers, south dakota

Extension Number

ExEx 6016


Herbaceous perennial flowers are plants that live for several years. Perennials die back to the ground in the fall, renew growth the following spring, flower, and then complete the cycle as they die back again that fall. Some perennials live many years while others die out after only a few years. Some plants are known as “tender perennials” since they may not survive winter conditions in some parts of the country. Consequently, they may be treated as annuals. Another group of flowers are known as “biennials” because they live for only two seasons. They form a low rosette of leaves with a very short stem during the first growing season. After overwintering, they resume growth, develop an upright stem, flower, possibly set seed, and then die. Many biennials appear perennial since they set seed and produce their own replacements.