Purple perennials add a contrasting color to any garden, brightening beds and borders from spring through fall. In this article, we’ll explore some of the best deep purple perennial plants for your yard and garden that offer gorgeous flowers, incredible longevity, and easy care.
Whether you’re looking for compact ground covers, towering blooms, or anything in between, these striking purple perennials will spice up any outdoor space for years. So if you want to add extraordinary hues to your garden this season, keep reading to discover some truly stunning purple flowering perennials worth planting this year!
JUMP TO TOPIC
- Stunning Purple Perennial Flowers To Add to Your Garden
- 1. Bearded Iris
- 2. Russian Sage
- 3. Butterfly Bush
- 4. False Indigo
- 5. Blazing Star
- 6. Salvia Nemorosa
- 7. Anise Hyssop
- 8. Agastache ‘Purple Haze’
- 9. Veronica ‘Sunny Border Blue’
- 10. Phlox ‘David’
- 11. Geranium ‘Rozanne’
- 12. Pasque Flower
- 13. Astilbe ‘Visions’
- 14. Aster ‘Amethyst’
- 15. Clematis ‘Polish Spirit’
- 16. Meadow Rue
- 17. Garden Phlox
- 18. Hardy Geranium
- 19. Morning Glory
- 20. Baptisia ‘Purple Smoke’
Stunning Purple Perennial Flowers To Add to Your Garden
1. Bearded Iris
Bearded irises have graceful, fan-shaped leaves and produce beautiful blooms in a wide range of purple hues. The flowers resemble futuristic orchids with their striking patterns, crests, and pointed beards that give the plant its name. Bearded irises come in many colors including lavender, plum, and violet.
Bearded irises offer a gorgeous profusion of color and pattern in the spring garden with little effort. The blossoms appear before much else is in bloom. To grow bearded irises successfully, plant them with an abundance of sunlight and soil with good drainage. Keep the rhizomes, the underground stem portion, dry to prevent rotting.
Amending the soil with compost or organic matter will also help ensure good drainage. The raised fan-shaped leaves provide an attractive backdrop for the flowers. Bearded irises’ arching fan-shaped foliage and abstract, futuristic flowers make them a stunning addition to any spring garden. Their beautiful, nuanced blooms and wide range of subtle colors ensure the bearded iris’ enduring appeal for modern plantings.
The capacity of bearded irises to produce a wealth of exquisite blooms in an array of purple hues all within a compact frame unites with their minimal care needs to render them indispensable components of the spring blooming perennial border. The ethereal beauty of bearded iris flowers emerging literally from the earth itself offers a sense of hope, renewal, and triumph of color and form at the turning of winter into spring.
2. Russian Sage
Russian sage makes attractive grayish-green foliage all season long and then produces showy spikes of violet-blue flowers in mid to late summer. The soft, fuzzy leaves and vibrant blooms work together to attract beneficial insects like bees, butterflies, and hummingbirds to the garden. Russian sage flowers offer a wealth of nectar for pollinators.
The fragrant, textured foliage and drooping spires of blossoms unite to transform Russian sage into an oasis for beneficial insects feeding on nectar and pollen, allowing gardeners to observe nature’s interactions up close. To grow Russian sage, provide average water but make sure that the soil experiences periods of dry spells. Do not overwater as wet soil can cause root rot.
Russian sage thrives in full sun and any well-draining soil. It is tolerant of hot and dry conditions once established. Some minor pruning may be needed after flowering to keep the plant bushy. Russian sage’s long-blooming flowers, aromatic greyish foliage, and ability to attract pollinators in abundance make it a wonderful addition to any summer garden.
The spires of violet blossoms provide a sumptuous source of richly clustered nectar for pollinating insects, allowing gardeners to witness a small feast for wildlife up close each day. The grayish, textured foliage and fragrant nature of Russian sage’s leaves unite with the generous nectar supply of its flowers to render the plant into an oasis for visiting pollinators over the summer months.
The effortless way Russian sage attracts and sustains wildlife while requiring minimal water and care ensures its enduring popularity in modern gardens and landscapes. The sensory pleasures of soft foliage, fragrant aroma, and sumptuous nectar-rich blooms that Russian sage offers unite with its function as a natural haven for pollinators to promise long-term rewards for gardens and gardeners alike.
3. Butterfly Bush
Butterfly bush is prized for its aromatic grayish-green foliage and tall spikes of lavender-purple flowers that attract hordes of butterflies.
The blooms appear in summer and may continue sporadically into fall.The vibrant color and nectar-rich flowers appeal deeply to visiting butterflies. The profusion of nectar-heavy blooms transforms the butterfly bush into an avian banquet, allowing gardeners to observe nature’s interactions up close.
The drought-tolerant and heat-loving nature of the butterfly bush makes it a popular perennial plant for large gardens and landscapes. It requires little care once established. Prune the butterfly bush back by one third immediately after the first bloom to encourage the growth of side shoots and a second flush of blooms later in summer.
Some gardeners prefer annual hard pruning to maintain a controlled size. Timely pruning also stimulates new growth and bloom. Butterfly bush’s attraction of swarms of butterflies, heat tolerance, ease of care, and profuse blooming make it a worthwhile addition to gardens seeking color, wildlife interest, and low maintenance needs.
The vivid spikes of purple flowers light up the summer garden while providing important nectar for visiting pollinators. The contrasting yellow highlights on the anthers provide even more nectar. The abundant supply of nectar-rich purple blooms unites with the minimal effort required by butterfly bush to render it into a veritable pollinator playground over the summer months.
The effortless way butterfly bush sustains clouds of nectar-seeking butterflies and bees while requiring little more than an occasional prune ensures its enduring popularity for modern gardens. The function of the butterfly bush as a living banquet for visiting pollinators while adding striking purple spires to the summer landscape promises long-term rewards for modern gardens seeking low-maintenance native alternatives.
4. False Indigo
False indigo is valued for its violet-blue, pea-like flowers that bloom on upright spikes above attractive sawtooth-edged foliage. The clustered blooms attract bees, butterflies, and hummingbirds to the garden for weeks in summer. Butterflies flock to false indigo for its nectar-rich flowers.
The vibrant color and abundance of blooms make false indigo a favorite of pollinators seeking an influx of nectar and pollen. Gardeners can observe nature’s interactions up close. False indigo thrives in moist, well-draining soils and prefers partial shade, though it can also tolerate full sun. Keeping the soil consistently damp and rich in organic material will promote the best growth.
Pruning immediately after flowering may be needed to keep the plant shapely. False indigo tends to spread slowly via creeping rhizomes. False indigo’s beautiful violet-blue spikes of blooms, long floral display, and ability to attract pollinators in abundance make it an ideal choice for shade gardens and borders seeking wildlife interest, low maintenance needs, and summer colors.
The plant’s innocuous name belies its value for today’s pollinator-friendly gardens, where its abundance of nectar-rich flowers and long bloom time render it an important summer food source for visiting insects. The function of false indigo as a provider of both beauty and sustenance for beneficial pollinators, requiring in return only some moisture and occasional pruning, promises long-term rewards for modern gardens aiming to support wildlife.
The vivid violet-blue spikes of false indigo blossoms lighting up shaded borders over summer weeks unite with the plant’s role as a living ladder for pollinators to ensure its continuing appeal for today’s wildlife gardens.
5. Blazing Star
Blazing Star makes an appealing addition to the summer garden with its tall spikes of violet-purple flowers. Each bloom starts facing downwards on the spike and then opens upwards to face the sky. This results in a dancing, two-toned effect that gives the plant its common name.
The vibrant color and abundance of blazing star flowers attract butterflies and songbirds in search of nectar. The flowers blossom in late summer above narrow green foliage. The tendency of blazing star to self-sow and naturalize makes it an easy perennial to include in beds and borders. The self-seeding habit ensures that new plants come up year after year.
Blazing star’s abundant display of purple blooms, tendency to attract beneficial pollinators, and self-sowing nature make it a worthwhile addition to the modern flowering garden. The upward-facing flowers provide a dramatic dose of late season color.
6. Salvia Nemorosa
Salvia nemorosa, or woodland sage, produces dense spikes of violet-blue to purple flowers from spring through summer. The erect green foliage forms an attractive basal rosette that remains neat all season long. Common names of popular cultivars like ‘Maynight’ and ‘New Dimensions Blue’ reflect the deep purple shades of many varieties.
Deadhead spent flowers to encourage rebloom. Pinching back stems in spring can result in bushier growth and more flowers. Woodland sage thrives in average to dry, well-drained soil and full sun. It is drought tolerant once established. Divide overgrown clumps in spring every three to four years.
Salvia nemorosa’s showy spikes of purple flowers, neat foliage, and durability make it an ideal choice for perennial borders and cottage gardens. The nectar-rich flowers also attract hummingbirds and butterflies to the summer garden.
7. Anise Hyssop
Anise hyssop entices pollinators to the garden with its beautiful spikes of lilac-blue flowers. The long-blooming blossoms attract bees, butterflies, hummingbirds, and more in mid-summer. The plant derives its common name from the licorice-scented aromatic foliage. The soft leaves release a hint of anise when crushed and are sometimes used to make herbal tea. Prune back spent flower spikes to the basal foliage to encourage regrowth.
Anise hyssop grows well in average, well-drained soil and full sun. The deep purple flowers thrive in moist soil that is allowed to dry between waterings. The drought-tolerant habit of anise hyssop and its minimal care requirements make it an asset for pollinator gardens and water-wise landscapes.
The abundance and duration of the blue blossoms, fragrant foliage, and ability to attract beneficial bees and butterflies combine to make anise hyssop an invaluable addition to any flowering perennial border.
8. Agastache ‘Purple Haze’
Agastache ‘Purple Haze’ anise hyssop delights the senses with its dramatic spires of vivid violet-purple blooms in mid to late summer. The aromatic, licorice-scented foliage forms an attractive backdrop for the flowers and helps to attract pollinators like bees, butterflies, and hummingbirds. The soft leaves release a hint of anise when crushed.
The drought-tolerant nature and low maintenance requirements of anise hyssop make it an adaptable and versatile perennial plant for gardens and landscapes. ‘Purple Haze’ thrives in average,well-drained soil and full sun. Prune back spent flower spikes to basal foliage to encourage regrowth and a second flush of blooms. Divide clumps only when overcrowded, usually every three to four years.
‘Purple Haze’ anise hyssop combines vivid blooms, fragrant foliage, and the ability to attract beneficial pollinators into a package that ensures its continuing appeal for gardeners seeking sensory pleasures and wildlife interest. The profuse flowers provide a wealth of nectar for visiting insects.
9. Veronica ‘Sunny Border Blue’
Veronica ‘Sunny Border Blue’ speedwell produces a dense carpet of narrow blue-green foliage and masses of violet-blue flower spikes in spring and summer. The bright blossoms appear on wiry stems held above the foliage, attracting pollinators like bees, butterflies, and hummingbirds. The profuse flowers produce abundant nectar for visiting insects.
Shearing back spent flowers by one-third immediately after the first bloom encourages the growth of side shoots and fosters a second flush of blooms later in summer. Veronica ‘Sunny Border Blue’ Speedwell thrives in average, well-drained soil and full sun. It is moderately drought tolerant once established. Divide clumps only when overcrowded, usually every three to four years.
The bright violet-blue blooms, ease of care needs and adaptability of ‘Sunny Border Blue’ Speedwell combine to make it an ideal choice for mixed perennial borders, cottage gardens and water-wise landscapes.
The profuse flowering, pollinator appeal and low maintenance requirements of Veronica ‘Sunny Border Blue’ Speedwell ensure its continuing popularity for modern gardens seeking sensory pleasures, easy upkeep and wildlife interest. The vivid flower spikes add welcome color and beauty throughout the spring and summer months.
10. Phlox ‘David’
Phlox ‘David’ produces dense panicles of deep violet-purple flowers with dark red eyes on sturdy upright stems in summer. The aromatic gray-green lance-shaped foliage forms a tidy clump and remains attractive all season long, providing a backdrop for the prolific blooms.
Deadhead spent blossoms to the next set of leaves to encourage rebloom and remove diseased foliage to promote good health. Divide overcrowded clumps in spring every three to four years. Phlox ‘David’ thrives in average to moist, well-drained soil and full sun. The deep purple flowers flourish with consistent moisture and benefit from occasional liquid fertilizer applications.
The upright open habit, tidy gray-green foliage, and profusion of violet-purple blooms with contrasting dark red eye centers make Phlox ‘David’ an excellent choice for beds, borders, and cottage gardens. The plentiful flowers attract pollinators while providing a feast for the eye’s health.
11. Geranium ‘Rozanne’
Geranium ‘Rozanne’ cranesbill produces stunning rounded deep purple-violet flowers with contrasting maroon veins and sepals from spring through fall. The rounded palmate foliage emerges bronze and then matures to green with maroon veining. The foliage provides an attractive backdrop for the prolific blooms.
The drought-tolerant and low-maintenance nature of ‘Rozanne’ geranium makes it an ideal purple perennial for borders, mass plantings, and containers. Deadhead spent flowers regularly to encourage continuous blooms. Divide overcrowded clumps in spring every three to four years.
Geranium ‘Rozanne’ thrives in average to dry, well-drained soil and full sun. The deep purple flowers flourish with regular watering when young but become more drought tolerant once established.
The continuous flowering habit, bi-colored foliage, and durability of Geranium ‘Rozanne’ make it a worthwhile addition to modern pollinator and water-wise gardens. The rounded violet blooms with maroon detail stand out stunningly against the bronze leaves.
12. Pasque Flower
Pasque flowers bear lovely rounded deep violet to purple blooms as soon as the snow melts in spring. The palmate basal leaves form an attractive rosette that often takes on shades of bronze in fall before dying back. The grass-like foliage remains attractive all season despite the plant’s brief flowering period.
Pasque flowers grow best in full sun and well-draining soil. They thrive in rock gardens and other gritty, freely drained areas. Deadheading spent flowers can help curb self-seeding.
The bell-shaped violet to purple blossoms emerging at winter’s end, relatively low maintenance needs, and tendency to announce spring’s arrival ensure the enduring appeal of pasque flowers for modern gardens seeking color, drama, and renewal at the change of seasons. The flowers bring a welcome burst of visual delight and continuity as winter relents and spring’s revitalizing forces rise up.
13. Astilbe ‘Visions’
Astilbe ‘Visions’ features fine blue-green foliage and vivid magenta-red flower plumes in summer. The striking color combination of deep magenta flowers against blue-green leaves makes an emphatic statement in the garden. The blossoms attract hummingbirds and butterflies in search of nectar.
Astilbe thrives in rich, moist, well-drained soil and prefers partial to full shade. Dividing crowded clumps every three to four years keeps plants healthy and vigorous. Astilbe ‘Visions’ showy blooms, ability to attract pollinators, and ease of culture make it a worthwhile addition to shaded perennial borders and woodland gardens. The unique color combination ensures its distinctive presence and popular appeal for modern plantings.
14. Aster ‘Amethyst’
Aster ‘Amethyst’ produces rich violet-purple daisy flowers with gold centers from late summer through fall.
The lance-shaped, grayish-green leaves form an attractive basal clump and remain neat all season long. They provide a backdrop for the prolific blooms. Asters prefer average to dry soils and full sun for optimal growth and bloom. Cutting back faded flower stems encourages basal regrowth and extends the flowering period.
Aster ‘Amethyst’ thrives with consistent moisture while young but becomes more drought tolerant once established. Divide overcrowded clumps every few years in spring. Aster ‘Amethyst’s’ showy violet-purple daisy flowers with contrasting gold centers, durability, and extended bloom time ensure its ongoing appeal for fall gardens and borders. The blooms provide a final burst of color as summer fades into autumn.
15. Clematis ‘Polish Spirit’
Clematis ‘Polish Spirit’ produces a vigorous vine bearing plentiful, vivid indigo-purple flowers with contrasting yellow stamens from mid to late summer. The glossy, compound leaves form an attractive backdrop for the showy blooms and remain neat all season long. The flowers provide a burst of dark color in the garden.
The juxtaposition of the vibrant indigo blooms against the green backdrop of the compound foliage unites to transform clematis ‘Polish Spirit’ into a visual delight for the summer garden. Give clematis average to rich, moist but well-drained soil for optimal growth and bloom. Provide a trellis, obelisk, or other support for the vines to climb.
Prune clematis after they finish blooming in late summer or early fall. Fertilize in early spring before new growth emerges. Clematis ‘Polish Spirit’s’ profuse display of indigo-purple flowers with complementary yellow anthers, vigorous growth, and long bloom period ensures its enduring popularity for modern gardens and trellises.
The vivid blooms lighting up the summer landscape provide a feast for the eyes, doubtlessly delighting both gardeners and passersby alike. The generous supply of richly clustered nectar within the blooms of clematis ‘Polish Spirit’ unites with the showy appearance of the flowers to attract beneficial pollinators in abundance.
The vigor and longevity of bloom that ‘Polish Spirit’ clematis exhibits while requiring little more than some pruning ensures its enduring appeal for modern gardens and landscapes. The vines that seemingly burst with life, covering their supports in a blanket of shiny leaves punctuated by clusters of darkly vivid blossoms, promise to remain an asset for gardens for seasons to come.
16. Meadow Rue
Meadow rue bears showy, airy plumes of violet-purple flowers atop delicate green foliage that resembles a fine fern. The lacy, fern-like leaves and six to seven inch fragrant blooms give meadow rue an elegant, delicate character that makes it ideal for the rear of borders or cottage gardens.
The species thrives in moist but well-draining soil in part shade to full sun. Prune after blooming to maintain shape and divide clumps every few years in spring. Meadow rue’s graceful, ethereal flower plumes, ability to soften a garden’s backdrop, and nectar-rich blooms that attract wildlife ensure its continuing appeal for gardens and habitats seeking an ornamental touch of wildness.
17. Garden Phlox
Garden phlox produces rounded clusters of fragrant purple, violet or pink flowers atop upright stems all summer long above lance-shaped leaves. Numerous cultivars offer flowers in a wide range of hue intensities from deep to pale shades. The flowers attract beneficial insects like bees, butterflies, and hummingbirds.
Garden phlox thrive in moist, fertile soil with even moisture and afternoon shade to reduce susceptibility to powdery mildew and other diseases. Dividing crowded clumps every three to four years keeps plants healthy.
Deadheading spent blossoms encourages a second flush of bloom and removes diseased foliage. Fertilize in early spring before plants leaf out and again after the first flowering. The abundance, fragrance, and long bloom period of garden phlox flowers in an array of rich hues ensure its enduring appeal for modern perennial borders and gardens. Despite its easy-going nature, phlox’s generous display of color rivals that of more “finicky” flowering plants.
18. Hardy Geranium
Hardy geraniums bear showy, deeply colored violet-purple flowers in shades of lilac, mauve, magenta and lavender from spring through fall. The palmate geranium leaves come in various patterns and vein colors, providing seasonal interest as a backdrop to the blooms.
They form attractive basal rosettes. Most hardy geraniums are drought tolerant once established and prefer full sun and well-drained soil. Deadheading spent blossoms encourages repeat blooming. Divide overcrowded clumps in spring every three to four years.
The wide array of flower colors, repeat bloom tendency, and durability of hardy geraniums ensure their continuing popularity for modern borders, rock gardens and water-wise landscapes. The profusion of deep-hued, pastel-tinted violet blooms from spring through fall and the ability of the basal foliage to add seasonal contrast and visual interest combine to make hardy geraniums indispensable components of flowering perennial gardens.
19. Morning Glory
Morning glories climb vigorously and produce large heart-shaped green leaves and trumpet-shaped purplish-blue to violet flowers that open in the morning and close by night.
Cultivars like ‘Heavenly Blue’ bear coral-red purple blossoms all summer long until frost. The prolific blooming and lobed foliage of morning glories transform any support into a living tapestry. Grow morning glories on fences, arbors, trellises or other frames for maximum effect. They thrive in average, moist but well-drained soil and full sun.
The tendency of morning glories to cover their supports in a blanket of lobed leaves and profuse purplish trumpet-shaped blooms overnight ensures their enduring popularity for modern gardens. The flowers that open each dawn with dew still on their petals bring a unique sense of delight and wonder.
20. Baptisia ‘Purple Smoke’
Baptisia ‘Purple Smoke’ produces steel gray-green compound foliage and graceful stems bearing loose terminal racemes of deep royal purple pea-like flowers in spring and summer. The vivid blooms attract numerous pollinators like bees, butterflies and hummingbirds. The nectar-rich flowers provide a abundant nectar source.
Baptisia ‘Purple Smoke’ prefers full sun and well-draining, dry to average moisture soils for optimal performance. Deadheading spent blossoms encourages rebloom. Divide mature clumps in spring every three to four years. Baptisia ‘Purple Smoke’ is drought tolerant once established and requires little care.
The contrasting gray-green foliage, royal purple blooms, and ease of culture make Baptisia ‘Purple Smoke’ an excellent choice for perennial borders, native plant gardens and water-wise landscapes. The abundance and longevity of the vivid purple blooms, ability to attract beneficial pollinators, and minimal care requirements ensure the enduring appeal of Baptisia ‘Purple Smoke’ for modern gardens and landscapes seeking colorful, adaptive and wildlife-friendly plantings.
In conclusion, purple perennials make a long-lasting impact in any garden with their vibrant flowering displays and neat foliage. If you want to elevate your garden to the next level and add a dash of drama, consider introducing these striking deep purple perennials this season:
- Baptisia ‘Purple Smoke’ provides months of colorful blooms with minimal care.
- Russian sage attracts beneficial pollinators and wildlife to your garden.
- The Geranium ‘Rozanne’ cranesbill is drought tolerant and low maintenance.
- The Blazing star comes back year after year, offering value that grows over time.
- The variety of shapes, sizes, and bloom times of purple perennials ensures that something is in flower all season.
Select varieties that suit your space and growing conditions, then sit back and enjoy the gorgeous glow of contrasting purple blooms that will delight you for many years.