great thing about flowers is that you really cant go wrong with
them. Even if a perennial bed doesnt turn out exactly like what
you envisioned, chances are its going to be attractive. After
all, have you ever encountered an ugly flower? And, unlike the wallpaper
or paint color that looked great in the store but now grates on your
nerves, perennial plants can be moved and rearranged (and even given
away) to suit your tastes. Its easier, and more fun, than re-wallpapering!
can find nearly every color of the spectrum in flowering perennials.
Most people are drawn to certain colors, so if there is a color
scheme youve admired--whether it is in a favorite sweater,
upholstery, or garden--keep this in mind when choosing plants.
Lets take a look at some popular perennial plants, and see
how different color combinations can set different moods.
powder blue, lavender, and peach--these gentle colors set a mood of
tranquility. They are the familiar colors of cottage gardens--informal
gardens that contain a variety of old-fashioned flowers. Pastel colors
look best when viewed from relatively close up, and they can looked
washed out in the harsh mid-day sun.
'Salmon Beauty' Achillea
Fountain Pink' Delphinium
Racy reds, vibrant
oranges, magenta, and sunny yellow--these colors invigorate and energize
a garden. Bright colors hold up well to brilliant sunshine, and attract
the eye even from a distance.
Colors that are opposite
on the color wheel are described as complementary. High in contrast,
complementary colors add creative energy and vitality to a garden. Yellow
and violet are complementary colors; as are orange and blue, and green
are colors that are next to each other on the color wheel; examples
include blue and violet, orange and red, and orange and yellow. These
color combinations tend to be gentler on the eye than complementary
colors. A harmonious color scheme unifies a garden, while allowing enough
range of color that it doesnt become monotonous.
you are concerned about your ability to choose colors, a harmonious
color scheme might be a good starting point for you. Unlike complementary
colors, which, if overdone, can seem jarring and can give a riotous
feel to a garden, harmonious colors are a pretty safe bet. As you
gain confidence in your design eye, you can always add splashes of
a complementary color here and there to liven things up.
You may have seen
gardens composed of all white flowers, and indeed some of the worlds
most famous gardens use a monochromatic color scheme. Instead of relying
on different colored flowers, the gardener creates interest by mixing
flowers of different sizes and shapes, and choosing foliage with interesting
textures and colors. Perhaps you are partial to a single color such
as yellow. You can create varying moods depending on whether you choose
soft pale yellows, bright sunny yellows, or deep golden yellows. Or
you might use a mix of shades.
Fountain White' Delphinium
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