Saturday, January 29, 2011


Photos from a few open gardens I visited in the summer in Washington DC.  Very inspirational, very colorful especially after the snow and winter storms we have had on the mid-East Coast this winter.

Not much color other than greens - but with leaf texture and different shades of green, what stunning movement and yet soothing and peaceful around a pond.  Only two shrubs adding something different are the pale pink Spirea and the hot pink Knockout Rose.

Aster and Lantana.  Colors opposite each other on the color wheel contrast and work together.  Purples, blues and lavenders planted with yellows, oranges and reds add excitement and interest.  They are not meant to be soothing and peaceful, but add a burst of wow.

A special piece nestled amongst the ivy, you stop to look, and whilst sitting there, he keeps you company.

Hot sub-tropicals alongside a swimming pool - these are not winter hardy in our Zone 7, but would survive a conservatory, or being brought indoors once the frost bites.  Or you could replant every year, as you would have to for the annuals like the Pentas, Potato Vine and Petunias that they have used to add interest in this garden.  The tropicals are Anthurium in the foreground, beautiful green, pink & white leaf Stromanthe tricolor, large green Colocasia (we called these huge leaves Elephant Ears in South Africa), and multi-color Crotons in the far background.  There are also a few Banana plants with their large tropical leaves behind the Elephant Ears, adding height and texture. 

Shade garden ideas.  Hardy Begonias which die back in winter, then come back each year in the Spring in our Zone 7, with a background of Caladiums, adding pink to the quiet, shady area, also dotted with Ferns and Hosta - old faithfuls in the shade garden.  Caladium bulbs can be replanted each year, add stunning leaf color to any shade garden they come in shades of pink, red, white and green.

New Zealand Flax, a focal plant, surrounded by brightly colored annuals and perennials.


Photos from open gardens I visited in the summer in Washington, DC.  I can't wait, miss my gardens and flowers.

Sunday, January 16, 2011