Mid Summer Borders

Helenium ThumbnailSomething has changed in the garden.
The tasteful pastel shades of spring and early summer have slipped away leaving space for more dramatic plants in eye watering shades of magenta, orange and red.

Helenium in Summer BorderA visit to Christopher Lloyds’ garden at Great Dixter years ago opened my eyes to alternative colour combinations in the border. It’s just a matter of being brave and bold I think and choosing plants you love… no matter what your friends say!

I’ve been experimenting each year since then and I love the bright colours of summer. But I’ve also developed a few “rules” for my own summer border.

1) Include perennials in shades of pink, red, purple, blue and orange but no yellow.

2) Grow supporting shrubs with grey-green foliage such as Roses, Buddleja and Euphorbia.

3) Include white flowers throughout the border.

I particularly love orange. Right now orange flowers are the stars in the summer border. There are Dahlias, Hemerocallis and a bright orange Lonicera – Honeysuckle.

This is Helenium ‘Moerheim Beauty’

Helenium Collage

Many perennials reach their peak in mid July. Somehow when the sun is high in the sky more intense colour and drama is required in the garden. So that’s why I choose some really bright plants. There are lots of beautiful dramatic perennials to choose from. It’s well worth visiting an open garden to discover your favourite. You’ll be able to see them in full flower now.

Are you bold with colour or do you prefer more tasteful borders?
For more  about Heleniums click this image.    Hurrah for Heleniums
Thanks for reading.   Gillian 😉

2 thoughts on “Mid Summer Borders

  1. Hi Gillian,
    I have the very same Helenium – wonderful isn’t it. Such a beautiful colour. This is the second year I have had it and it has managed to survive very well – just coming into flower now; I can’t wait.
    I would agree whole heartedly with the foliage and the white throughout the borders, but will have to look again at my yellows. I know it is a personal preference and I know they don’t go with pink, but surely they would go with those Heleniums for example? I suppose it depends what else you have around them. I do tend to choose plants I like and often get the wrong colours together. That is why I have to move so much come Autumn. It would be a good idea to visit other gardens for examples and I had fully intended to do so – where does the time go! Oh well maybe next year……

    1. Yes I agree Annette. Yellow flowers work very well with most Heleniums. And your garden looks beautiful. I really DO love yellow but just for the summer I try to keep it out of this mixed border. Yellow flowers are all over the garden here in spring but in summer I restrict them to the gravel garden at the front of the house. Sometimes leaving just one colour out makes all the difference to a planting scheme. Thanks very much for reading and commenting. Gillian 🙂

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