Summer flower bed with Black-eyed Susans and patio stones

In Canada, gardening season is in full-swing now that the sun is shining and temperatures are warmer. This has many homeowners heading to their local greenhouse to pick out some new plants to add to their garden.

If you’re new to gardening, you may want to start off with low-maintenance, robust plants that are easy to maintain without an expert-level of horticultural knowledge.

Before picking out you plants, here are a few mindful tips for the beginner gardener to help you get started:

Sunlight and shade

Put the right plants in the right place! Surprising to some, but not all plants love the sun. Be attentive to where you place your plants in your garden to ensure they’re in a spot optimal for their specific growing needs – some plants thrive in full sun conditions, while others do best in a mix of shade and daylight.


You’ll be tucking your plants into their garden bed, so it’s important to ensure they’re comfortable. The soil surrounding your home might not be ideal for growing certain types of plants. You can bring a soil sample to your local greenhouse for testing to determine whether or not it’s usable, and if new soil is required.


Some plants are drought-resistant, while others require regular watering. Keep the specific water needs of each plant well documented so your hard work in the garden doesn’t go to waste.

Perennials versus annuals

Before adding any plants to your garden, it’s important to distinguish between varieties that are seasonal and those that stand the test of time. Annuals are the plants that join your garden party for just one season, while perennials are your trusty, long-term garden companions, returning year after year without replanting. Both are wonderful in their own way, adding their unique charm to your outdoor space.


It’s important to be aware of your surroundings and pick plants and trees that are best for the climate you live in. If you live in a region where temperatures dip below zero, you should also keep an eye on the frost report in your area at the beginning of spring and wait to start gardening until after the frost lifts.

Now that you’re familiar with some basic gardening know-how, here is a list of seven beginner-friendly plants to start with in your garden this year:

1. Boxwoods


Boxwoods are the perfect addition to any garden because they are incredibly resilient. They are drought-resistant, low-maintenance, evergreen shrubs that offer year-round greenery – perfect for the beginner gardener, and loved by even the most seasoned.

2. Hostas


Hostas are the go-to choice for beginner gardeners in Canada because they offer lush greenery while requiring minimal maintenance. They’re perfect to use for lawn borders, ground cover, or adding greenery throughout your property. Hostas are available in different sizes and colours. Place them in partial- to full-shaded areas of your garden – this is where they’ll thrive!

3. Black-eyed Susans


Black-eyed Susans add a beautiful pop of colour to your garden. To grow these blooms in abundance, don’t be afraid to cut them back to encourage abundant blooms — the more you prune, the more they’ll grow. Black-eyed Susans are known pollinators, perfect for attracting bumblebees and butterflies to your garden. These flowers are available in a few different colours, including the most popular variety – yellow! These flowers love the sun, so be sure to plant them in an area with full sun exposure.

4. Garden Phlox


Garden Phlox are available in a variety of colours and smell amazing. Hummingbirds and butterflies love these flowers. They bloom from mid-summer to late fall, and will blossom more vigorously in areas with full sun and ample air flow. Deadhead these pollinators and water them often to have them grow more plentifully.

5. Lavender


Lavender, known for its calming fragrance, is an excellent choice for beginner gardeners due to its resilience and easy upkeep. Lavender thrives in well-drained soil and full sunlight, and is drought-tolerant once established, making it a perfect flower for a beginner’s garden. Be sure to water lavender regularly and prune them lightly after flowering to encourage bushier growth.

6. Daylilies


Daylilies add beauty to your garden with their vibrant and long-lasting flowers. They’re great for beginner gardeners due to their resilience and adaptability. These hardy perennials thrive in various soil conditions and light levels. This makes them easy to grow in almost any garden. Show love to these plants with regular watering and deadheading, and they’ll flourish.

7. Peonies


Peonies are known for their fluffy fragrant blooms and are one of the most commonly used flowers in bridal bouquets. Lucky for the novice gardener who wants to add elegance to their home, these stunning stems are an excellent choice. Not only are they incredibly resilient, but these perennials are available in an abundance of colours.

Happy gardening!