Color Your World
I want color, color and more color!" That's what I often hear from homeowners eager to fill their gardens with bright, beautiful flowers. So what's the secret to creating nonstop color in your borders? It's all in the mix. By combing several types of plants, you can create a lively, ever changing tapestry of flowers and foliage. Try them and see what a colorful difference they make in your garden this year.
Think Foliage First, Then Flowers
Who hasn't been swept away by all those beautiful blooming plants in garden centers? The instant you plant them, they say, "Color!" The problem is, many flowering plants put on a good one-time show, but then fade, leaving you with a bed of green leaves. One solution is to look for colorful foliage plants. All summer long the leaves will mix and mingle with your flowering plants, compounding the color in your borders.
Great Foliage Plants:
'Black Magic' Elephant Ears
'Chocolate Chip' Ajuga
Create Large Swaths of Color
There are many annual bedding plants that are so loaded with blooms that when you plant them in bold, dramatic sweeps or large blocks, your borders will sing with color all summer. Rather than a spotty planting of 5 or 6 plants, punch up your color volume with 2 or 3 flats and pack them in for some real pizzazz.
Top Designer Annuals:
'Laguna Sky Blue' Lobelia
'Supertunia Vista Bubblegum' Petunia
'Superbells Red' Calibrachoa
'Spirit Frost' Cleome
'Angelface Blue' Angelonia
Add Colorful Trees, Shrubs and Perennials
Build on the beauty of foliage and annual bedding plants by mixing in a variety of colorful trees, shrubs, roses and perennials. The advantage of this approach is you don't have to begin each spring filling your entire bed with new plants. You can rely on these returning seasonal bloomers to enhance your garden's palette.
Super Shrub Roses:
This article originally appeared as my "Your Garden" column in the May 25, 2004 issue of Woman's Day magazine. To read more of my garden and home advice included in the magazine visit www.womansday.com and become a subscriber.