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21 Practically No-Fail Perennials to Plant in Zone 3

Are you tired of perennials dying in your garden or yard? Do you live in Saskatchewan or near Zone 3? If you said yes – then definitely take a look at this list!

There are many beautiful perennials that can thrive in your zone, you just have to know the right ones. These plants below are going to survive and thrive in Zone 3, particularly in areas with a climate similar to my home near Saskatoon, Canada.

Disclaimer & Reminder: You still need to care for your plants the first year that they are planted. This includes weeding and watering.

NOTE: The 21 flowers that are listed below are categorized by their light requirements. HOWEVER, some of these plants could also handle other amounts of light. For example, Columbines can handle both part shade and full sun!

If you prefer watching videos, here’s one that has a lot of the same picks, but there’s a few surprises.

Now on to the perennials!!

Shade Tolerant Perennials

1. Bergenia

Bergenias are amazing for having long-lasting blooms in Zone 3. They typically come in this cute pink colour, red, or white!

2. Bleeding Heart

This uniquely named flower are super simple to grow and can add a pop to colour to the shady spots around your yard. They come in classic Valentine’s Day colours of white, soft pink, or dark pink!

3. Ferns

Over the past 2 years, I have probably pulled at least 200 ferns out of my backyard. And no, this is not an exaggeration. Saying this, a lot of people enjoy having ferns in their yards because they work very well in shady spots!

4. Hostas

Do you have that awkward part along your house that hardly gets any sun and looks so bare? Hostas are your answer! They are shade-lovers and come in a lot of different leaf designs.

5. Lily of the Valley

The adorable little flowers are in love in with Zone 3 because they are super easy to grow in this error. BUT these flowers are poisonous to pets if they are ingested.

6. Rockfoil

These plants are SUPER easy to grow and hardly require any attention. They do spread a tad so be prepared!

Part Shade Perennials

7. Columbine

These flowers are a good choice when looking for flowers that comes in many colours and awesome for Zone 3. Columbines are also an great flower if you’re looking to attract hummingbirds to your garden!

8. Day Lilies

Day Lilies are a classic garden flower that come in many, many colours! Although they are awesome in Zone 3, the orange-coloured ones seem to spread a lot. This flower has made the most-regretted list, but if you keep them contained or accept the spread – you will be golden!

9. Lady’s Mantle

Lady’s mantle add a unique chartreuse colour to your garden. They thrive in shady spots, and can add some cool contrast to the darker green areas of your garden.

10. Snowdrop

These endearing and awesome-named flowers provide a bright, calming white in your garden. These are unique for Zone 3 and similar zones because they aren’t a warm-air loving flower.

Full Sun Perennials

11. Asiatic Lilies

Asiatic lilies come in every colour of the rainbow colour! Plus, they are pretty low-maintenance. Put them in a sunny spot and they’ll flourish year after year.

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12. Daisies

Daisies are a very common flowers in gardens. But definitely be careful and be prepared for these flowers to take over your garden, they are super invasive!

13. Delphiniums

These stunningly tall flowers are ideal along the fence of your yard or against your house. Be careful where you put them because they can grow up to be 5 ft tall.

TIP: Be sure to stake them or provide a cage for them if you plant them in a windy spot.

14. Heliopsis

These guys here can also grow to be tall, so they look great against a wall too! These flowers are a yellow look-alike to daisies, and ideal if you are looking for less-invasive species.

15. Liatris

These cool shaped native perennials are a must if your looking for more looks in your garden, as they are very uniquely shaped and therefore eye-catching!

16. Maltese Cross

These flowers are bright red in colour and come in bunches of small flowers. They can grow quite tall, so plant them near the back of the flower bed.

17. Muscari (Grape Hyacinth)

Grape Hyacinths are small adorable flowers that grow closer to the ground. They’re definitely eye-catching and are a nice purple scent to your yard or garden.

18. Sedum

These flowers just look so funky, yet modest in a garden. It’s hard not to add these to your garden because of the amazing amount of options they come in.

NOTE: Sedums can survive hot weather if it’s looking like your area is going to experience some intense warmth this summer. If your looking for more flowers that can survive the heat, click here!

19. Tulips

These are very popular flowers in Zone 3 and come in almost every shade and colour!

NOTE: Like any spring-blooming perennial, you need to plant them in the fall, not spring.

20. Veronica

Veronicas are the perfect flower if your looking for something that will shine for most of the summer! Beware though, some gardeners I know have reported that these flowers spread like crazy!

21. Yarrow

These cute little flowers thrive in Zone 3, and come in an insane amount of colours. They also look great in bouquets of cut-flowers!

Looking for even more perennials that can survive in Zone 3? Check out my post of 53 Favourite Perennials to Plant in Zone 3 for the ultimate garden!


Everything you need to easily create your own perennial garden with constant blooms. You’ll get an easy to follow system, along with 5 templates and 5 done-for-you plans, plus fun bonuses.


Rachel Kay

Rachel Kay

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Hi, I'm Kristen and I help new gardeners learn to grow their own vegetables and beautify their yards. I also share recipes that use all that delicious garden produce. Grab a coffee (and your gardening gloves) and join me for gardening tips, simple recipes, and the occasional DIY, all from the lovely city of Saskatoon, Saskatchewan.

P.S. First time gardener? You'll want to download the quick start gardening guide below!