Herbaceous perennials are ornamental plants which survive for many years.
They put on leafy growth and flower during the spring, summer and autumn, then die back to their roots over-winter. In the following spring season, they grow above ground again.
Some herbaceous perennials may be evergreen or semi-evergreen if the winter is mild, or in more temperate and sheltered climates.
Many favourite and popular garden plants for the flower border are herbaceous perennials; for example, Geraniums and Heuchera.
A lot of ‘cottage garden’ plants are also herbaceous perennials, Aquilegia (Granny’s bonnets) for example.
There are some plants which are often referred to as herbaceous perennials which do maintain a permanent foliage and stem above ground, such as Lamium (dead nettle) and Dianthus (cottage garden pinks). These are more properly small, short lived perennials.