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Best New Plants for Your Garden, Patio and Balcony

From long-lasting hydrangeas to long-flowering roses to tasty hybrid tomatoes –– these plants are your best bet if you're looking for something new.

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Oh deer!

I’d be lying if I said there were deer-proof plants. But there are plants that deer are less likely to munch. Check these out.

photos courtesy provenwinners.com, walters gardens inc., peace tree farm

Brilliance autumn fern (Dryoperis erythrosora) — Deer leave most ferns alone, so if you’ve got shade they’re a great option. Brilliance autumn fern is a standout with red-tinged foliage that turns coppery in fall.

Lemon Love and Autumn Bride alumroot (Heuchera villosa) — Perform best in shade but tolerate part sun. The foliage grows to 18 inches and stays dense and attractive all summer. As fall approaches, sprays of delicate flowers create a froth above the foliage. Lemon Love has chartreuse foliage that lights up a shade garden.

Phenomenal lavender — A top lavender for our region: winter-hardy and mildew resistant in humid summers. It grows 2 to 3 feet tall and bears wands of fragrant purple flowers you can use fresh or dried in arrangements, potpourri, baked goods and beverages.

​Summerific perennial hibiscus (Hibiscus moschuetos) — A real presence in the garden at 3 to 5 feet tall with crazy-big summer flowers in shades of soft pink to red. It loves moist soils and full sun but performs admirably in average soils too.

Martha Swiss is a Pittsburgh garden writer and designer. Read her blog at plantsomejoy.com.

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