P1010223Start the gardening year with these easy to grow white spring blooming perennials. Their white flowers brighten a gray landscape and look good with any other plants that come into bloom with them. Alternatively, use white flowered plants as transitions from one color to another or plant a garden featuring white flowers all through the gardening season

Wall Rock-cress (Arabis albida)
Arabis Rock cressBlooming in early spring, wall rock-cross forms a loose evergreen mat and is especially useful cascading down walls. Fragrant flowers ½” wide are carried in racemes over the gray-green foliage. Plants do best in areas with coolnights and low humidity. Good varieties include var. flore-plena, ‘Snowball’, and ‘Snow Cap”

Size:4-10” H x 18-24” H depending on variety
Light: Full sun to light shade
Soil: Average to lean, moderately moist to dry, well-drained
Hardiness: Zones 4-7

Common Candytuft (Iberis sempervirens)
Iberis sempvirens 2This woody-based perennial forms an everygreen mound with dark green leathery leaves ¾” wide and 1- ½” long. The small flowers are borne in flat top clusters and may completely cover the plant. Some cultivars like ‘Autumn Beauty’ and Autumn Snow” bloom in both spring and fall. Dwarf cultivars are also available.

Size: 9-12” H x 18” W
Light: Full sun to very light shade
Soil: Average, medium moist, well-drained
Hardiness: Zones 3-9

Lily of the Valley (Convallaria majalis)
Convallaria majalis lily_of_the_valleyFor fragrance it is hard to beat Lily of the Valley. The small white nodding flowers are bell-shaped and a give off of a delicious perfume that demand that the plants be located near a patio or window where they can be enjoyed to the fullest. The dark green leaves are elliptical and six to nine inches long. Plants spread vigorously by rhizomes in cool climates.

Size: 8-12” H x 12” W
Light: Part to full shade
Soil: Fertile, evenly moist
Hardiness: Zones 2-7, less vigorously in 8

Sweet Woodruff (Galium odoratum)
P1010223A great ground cover in a shady spot, the bright green leaves sweet woodruff in spring are as welcome as the tiny, star-like clusters of flowers. The plants spread by wiry, creeping underground roots in moist shady spots but are very easy to control if they become to exuberant.

Size: 5-8” H x 18” W
Light: Part shade
Soil: Humusy, moist but tolerates less
Hardiness: Zones 4-8

Spotted Dead Nettle (Lamium maculatum) ‘White Nancy’
lamium white nancyhe ten week long bloom in spring is enough to recommend this popular ground cover but the foliage is also a large part of this plants success. The leaves are green with silver mottling and brighten a shade spot in the garden. The two-lipped flowers are borne in short dense spikes

Size: 8-12” H x 18” W
Light: Part sun to semi shade
Soil: Average to rich, moist, well-drained
Hardiness: Zones 4-9

Allegheny Foamflower (Tiarella cordifolia)
Tiarella_cordifolia_2This North American wildflower produces fluffy white flowers on spike like racemes 3-4” long and evergreen maple-like leaves with pronounced venation. Plants spread by runners and rhizomes and can rapidly from large clumps.

Size: 6-12” H x 24” W
Light:Partial to full shade
Soil: Rich, medium moist, well-drained, slightly acidic
Hardiness: Zones 3-8

By Karen