Lois J. de Vries' Top Plant Recommendation: Favorite Perennials for Mid-Atlantic.
I grow both the native and hybrid varieties. Self-sows readily; grows in sun or shade. I favor the blue and purple. Leaf miners are always a problem, but I view that as a minor inconvenience.
Bleeding Heart - Dicentra
I grow both the traditional and fern-leaf types. They are prolific spring bloomers and can grow quite large. Need little care other than occasional feeding and are deer-resistant. Plants are tallish and spreading, so they make a good backdrop for other flowers once they've finished blooming
Lavandula - Lavender
Wonderfully fragrant, deer-resistant, bluish-gray coloring is a good foil for other plants. Many varieties available that, when planted together, make their own long-blooming garden. When trimmed, will rebloom.