Best Summer Perennials For Zone 6 (Hillsborough Township, NJ)

The best thing about perennials is that they only have to be planted once. With the right care, they will thrive and grow into an incredible garden or landscaping features. Here in Hillsborough, NJ, our soil falls into “Zone 6.” Fortunately there are several varieties of perennials to satisfy all gardeners that will do well in this zone.

Here are some of our favorites…

Zone 6 Perennial Flowers

When people think of a garden, the first thing that comes to mind is flowers. A beautiful, well-kept garden begins with planting varieties that are meant for the area. For example, planting a palm tree or hibiscus in your backyard, will likely fail because NJ doesn’t have the consistent heat the plant needs to live. When you pair the flowers with the right soil, the result is an impressive garden!

Coneflower Daylily Bee Balm
A close up of pink-purple coneflowers in zone 6 soil.
A close up of an orange daylily in NJ.
Red, pink, purple, and white bee balm growing in a zone 6 garden.
Growing Tips:

  1. Have poor soil? Good! Coneflowers love it.
  2. These flowers like full sun.
  3. They grow well with just seasonal rainfall.
  4. Cut the plant back by a third at the end of summer. This will encourage the plant to produce new healthy flowers until the fall.
Growing Tips:

  1. Plant them in early spring or fall.
  2. Daylilies need at least 6 hours of sun.
  3. Cut the foliage back 6inches.
  4. The flowers only live for a day BUT a mature group of the plant can produce 200-400 flowers in a month.
Growing Tips:

  1. Bee balm likes moist soil.
  2. Be sure to plant them in a sunny location.
  3. Cut the plant down to just a few inches tall in the fall.
  4. For a bushier plant, pinch off the stem tips. This will encourage new growth in the early spring.

Best Vegetable Garden Perennials for Zone 6

Don’t have the time or space to dedicate to a floral garden? Go with vegetables. Many people love to include a vegetable garden in their yard because they can eat and enjoy what they grow. Fortunately, Zone 6 is an excellent place for many favorites to thrive. Whether they’re potted or grown in the ground, these are just some of the vegetables that you can grow for a garden-fresh meal.

Tomatoes Cucumbers Bell Peppers
A close up of tomatoes growing in clusters in a zone 6 garden.
Two cucumbers growing on a vine in a NJ vegetable garden.
A close up of red & green bell peppers for zone 6 vegetable gardens.
Growing Tips:

  1. Tomatoes don’t like the cold. They need temperatures of at least 65˚F.
  2. This plant likes full sun.
  3. Make sure your tomatoes get a lot of water.
  4. The plant is delicate, so make sure it has protection from the wind.
  5. Picking ripe tomatoes often will encourage new growth.
Growing Tips:

  1. Cucumbers require a lot of space to grow.
  2. You can train them to grow upwards as climbers to reduce the amount of space they need on the ground.
  3. Do best in warm, humid weather.
  4. Make sure they have plenty of sunlight.
Growing Tips:

  1. Bell peppers are easy to grow, but they like it hot.
  2. Do not plant them until nighttime temperatures rise to a minimal average of 50˚F.
  3. Plant them 18-24in. apart.
  4. These do very well when planted near tomatoes.
  5. If the peppers are too thin, they aren’t ripe. If they feel soggy, then they’ve been left on the vine too long.

Classic Zone 6 Shrubs

Flowering shrubs are excellent additions to any garden or as a colorful landscaping feature. Many will thrive in Zone six, but depending on the variety, some will require more attention and specific elements than others. However, if you give these plants all that they require, perennial shrubs will reward you will gorgeous flowers year after year.

Hydrangea Butterfly Bush Rose
Blue, pink and purple hydrangeas for NJ gardens.
A purple butterfly bush in zone 6 soil.
A close up of a rose on a zone 6 rose shrub bush.
Growing Tips:

  1. Hydrangeas like full sun or partial shade. However, they do not like extremely hot conditions, so plant them where they will have shade in the afternoon.
  2. Give them deep watering once a week.
  3. Prune the flowers once they’ve stopped blooming. This will promote new growth.
  4. Give them fertilizer twice a year in spring and summer.
Growing Tips:

  1. The butterfly bush prefers well-drained soil. If the ground it too wet, it will cause the plant to rot.
  2. This plant likes sun or partial shade.
  3. Give the shrub plenty of room to grow.
  4. In spring and summer be sure to deadhead the plant.
Growing Tips:

  1. Roses need at least 6 hours of sunlight a day.
  2. They require well-drained, fertile soil.
  3. This bush needs at least 1inch of water each week.
  4. Mulching rose shrubs will help retain water and provide protection for the plant in winter.
  5. Prune out any twigs or unhealthy branches.

Here at Hillsborough Irrigation & Landscape Services, it’s our pleasure and pride to make NJ homes and yards beautiful. Trust us to deliver gardening and landscaping designs that will thrive years after year. Our maintenance services ensure that your yard has curb appeal and the necessary attention your plants need to grow healthily. With our specialized knowledge of the NJ area soil and the native plants, our landscaping is second to none.

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