top of page

15 flowering perennials for the middle of a border

Updated: Feb 1, 2023

The plants you grow in the middle of your borders are surrounded on all sides and need to be the perfect height to not disappear.


You can go with larger perennials that spread to take up more space. Or plant tall, thin plants with spire-shaped flowers. This helps to break up a stacked, layered look and still lets the plants behind it be seen. You’ll get more of a relaxed vibe to your borders with a few tall, thinner plants mixed in the middle.


After you’ve selected your favorite mid-sized perennials, finish off your landscaping with the best low-growing perennials for the front of the border and taller, eye-catching plants for the back.


What can you plant in the middle of a border? Here are 15 of my favorites that come back year after year! And ones I have growing in my garden right now.



1. Yarrow (Achillea millefolium 'Safran')


pink yarrow from lars wildes perennial garden

Height: 50-60 cm (20-24 inches)

Sun exposure: Full sun to partial shade

Type of soil: Well-drained

Blooms: late spring to early summer


Click here to see even more pink perennial flowers — ones that keep coming back year after year.

 

2. Allium 'Millenium' (Allium senescens 'Millenium')


purple allium perennial flowering plant

Height: 50 cm (20 inches)

Sun exposure: Full sun

Type of soil: Well-drained

Blooms: late spring to early summer

 

3. Japanese Anemone 'Carmen' (Anemone hybrida 'Carmen')


pink japanese anemone perennial flower

Height: 60 cm (24 inches)

Sun exposure: Partial shade

Type of soil: Well-drained

Blooms: late spring to early summer

 

4. Columbine | European Crowfoot | Granny's Bonnet (Aquilegia vulgaris)


pink columbine perennial flowering plant

Height: 60-70 cm (24-28 inches)

Sun exposure: Partial shade to full sun

Type of soil: Well-drained

Blooms: late spring to early summer

 

5. False Goat's Beard | Tall False-Buck's-Beard | Chinese Astilbe (Astilbe chinensis)



Height: 50 cm (20 inches)

Sun exposure: Partial shade to full shade

Type of soil: Moist and well-drained

Blooms: late spring to early summer

 

6. Hattie's Pincushion | Masterwort (Astrantia hybrid 'Florence')


pink and white masterwort from perennial garden lars wildes

Height: 60-70 cm (24-28 inches)

Sun exposure: Partial shade

Type of soil: Well-drained

Blooms: late spring to early summer

 

7. Common Quaking Grass (Briza media)



Height: 50 cm (20 inches)

Sun exposure: Full sun to partial shade

Type of soil: Well-drained

Blooms: late spring to early summer

 

8. Clustered Bellflower (Campanula glomerata 'Superba')


purple clustered perennial bellflowers

Height: 50-60 cm (20-24 inches)

Sun exposure: Full sun to partial shade

Type of soil: Well-drained

Blooms: late spring to early summer

 

9. Mountain Bluet | Perennial Cornflower (Centaurea montana 'Grandiflora')


purple perennial cornflower flowers

Height: 60-70 cm (24-28 inches)

Sun exposure: Full sun

Type of soil: Well-drained

Blooms: Late summer to early fall


Want to see more purple perennials? Click here to find your new favorites.

 

10. Rose Turtlehead (Chelone obliqua 'Pink Turtlehead')


pink rose turtlehead perennial flowering plants

Height: 50-60 cm (20-24 inches)

Sun exposure: Full sun to partial shade

Type of soil: Moist and well-drained

Blooms: late summer to early fall

 

11. Bleeding Heart (Dicentra spectabilis 'Cupid')


pink and white bleeding heart perennial flowering plant

Height: 60 cm (24 inches)

Sun exposure: Partial shade to full shade

Type of soil: Moist and well-drained

Blooms: late spring to early summer

 

12. Avens (Geum rivale 'Tales of Hex')



Height: 60 cm (24 inches)

Sun exposure: Full sun to partial shade

Type of soil: Moist and well-drained

Blooms: late spring to early summer

 

13. Oxeye Daisy (Leucanthemum vulgare)


white oxeye daisy from perennial garden

Height: 50-60 cm (20-24 inches)

Sun exposure: Full sun

Type of soil: Well-drained

Blooms: late spring to early summer

 

14. Lupine (Lupinus)


purple lupines in a border

Height: 50-60 cm (20-24 inches)

Sun exposure: Full sun to partial shade

Type of soil: Well-drained

Blooms: late spring to early summer

 

15. Bee Balm (Monarda 'Purple Lace')


bee balm in purple planted in the middle of a flower border

Height: 60-70 cm (24-28 inches)

Sun exposure: Full sun

Type of soil: Well-drained

Blooms: late spring to early summer


Are you ready to plant the middle of your borders?


Whether you’re starting these mid-border flowering perennials from seed or planting mature plants from a nursery, I’m sure they’re going to bring that extra pop to your garden.


And don’t forget that pollinators like a variety of different flower shapes, colors and sizes. Don’t be afraid to plant 5 or more different plants from this list. Depending on the look you’re going for, you can even plant all 15! The pollinating insects will love you for it.


If you have questions about what works in your area, drop me a line or contact your local gardening expert for help. Or drop me a line and ask any questions you have.

Welcome to my garden

Hi! I'm Lars (Denmark).

Thanks for joining me as I share tips and inspiration for perennial gardening. 

Click below to see what's growing in my garden right now? 

  • Instagram
  • Facebook
  • YouTube

Trending posts

bottom of page