PHILADELPHIA (CBS) – “What are those pretty flowers that sort of look like hydrangeas?,” asked my niece Hannah who’s just getting into gardening. The flowers she meant were our native tall garden phlox, Phlox paniculata – and I hadn’t thought of it before, but their poofy flowerheads do resemble hydrangeas. Except instead of having to dig and plant a big shrub, phlox is a perennial plant which disappears in winter.

The spindly little plants I put in last summer are thriving in full sun – now already grown to 2 feet high and wide – and have been blooming since before the 4th of July.

Garden phlox has a slightly spicy scent that’s inviting to people and pollinators – and it provides a place for butterflies to raise their babies. Flower colors range from white to light or bright pinks to dark purple and blue flowers – many with a cute contrasting center eye.

If you don’t have any garden phlox yet, plant some now or in the spring to enjoy all next summer and for years to come.

Reported By Phran Novelli, KYW Newsradio

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