These variegated plants in many sizes and colors are selected for their foliage, not their flowers. Most varieties prefer part shade, but the darker ones can handle a little more sun. Coleus plants require well-drained soil and they need frequent watering during dry spells. But they add dramatic impact to any small space.
Ornamental onions generally are tall, vertical growers, adding architectural interest and pollinator value. They also help to repel rabbits, chipmunks and other critters.
Salvia (annual or perennial)
Upright, easy-care salvias are available in numerous colors and sizes. Some survive our winters; others don’t, so check the tags. All make a statement in pots or small garden plots.
To attract butterflies and other pollinators, include coneflowers (Echinacea spp.). Most are North American native plants or hybrids. When they bloom, watch the butterflies appear.
Note: Potted plants—even perennials—are less likely to survive the cold, but you may be able to keep them in a garage or porch during the winter, and move them back outside for the growing season.