If you are living in the Ottawa area there is a very good chance that your soil may be clay. The problem with this is that the clay holds moisture and the roots of many plants will rot. Here is a list of plants that should survive fairly well in the clay.
- Monarda. Bee balm.
- Aconitum. Monkshood.
- Alcea. Hollyhock.
- Coreopsis verticillata
If you are interested in more options, I suggest speaking to a reputable garden center in your area and they should be able to add a couple other selections that will work for your specific conditions.