If I could choose only one species for my flower garden, I would pick the Pansy. Why? Let me count the ways:
It blooms non-stop from early spring as the snow is receding until late fall when it is smothered by the new snows of winter.
It will grow under a variety of conditions and will self-sow readily.
It is fully perennial in my cool-summer climate.
It comes in all the colors of the rainbow from white through black, including yellow, pink, purple, blue,red, brown, green, orange and exquisite bicolor and tricolor combinations.
If this is not enough to award the Pansy the "Perfect Plant" medal, it is also edible!!