Memorial Day rolls out the red carpet in anticipation of Summer’s arrival when Spring’s volatile weather gives way to long, languid, warm days when life seems to slow and mellow. Memorial Day is also a symbolic time in our yards and gardens. It is a call to arms, and we answer it with flowers. Glorious, vibrant, flowers.

We all have our favorites and our garden mainstays and perhaps a few we vow never to plant again. The combinations of flowers are endless and purely subjective, but why do we plant certain flowers with others? Perhaps they compliment each other in color, size, texture, shape or bloom time or perhaps they create striking, eye-catching contrasts. There are certainly no right or wrong plant combinations, but there are a few things to consider, and in doing so, just might open your eyes to a whole new world of possibilities. Ultimately, flower combinations can help evoke a mood, set a tone, and create ambience.

Complimenting plants create harmony through shared qualities while contrasting plants create drama through differences. For example, take a color wheel. Colors that are opposite each other, like red and green, blue and orange, or yellow and purple work well together. Equally effective are plants grouped together that share a common pigment or vary in degrees of saturation.

Want to create excitement? Consider combining red, orange and yellow. They are bold and easily viewed from a distance. Consider grouping Zinnia, Gazania, and Salvi

Looking to create a calming, cool oasis?  Use cooler colors, like blue, purple, white or pink.  How about Petunias and Geraniums, each come in a whole host of colors:

How about drama mixed with a bit of sophistication?  Consider planting high contrasting colors and textures.  Coleus and Dahlia are two of my favorites, and both do well in the shade

Different heights and textures in soft, similar hues creates harmony.  Consider Allium and Calamint:

How about different varieties of lavender grouped together for a breathtaking display?

As you can see, there are really no right or wrong ways for combining flowers.  Ultimately, it needs to make you happy, but there is somewhat of a science behind it in terms of setting a tone and creating an environment that suits and reflects you.

If you’re just not suror are overwhelmed by all the possibilities, reach out to Sweeney’s.  We’d be happy to direct you, inspire you, and plant your dream garden, whether it be a bed, planter, containers, etc.

In honor of Memorial Day, take a moment to remember the brave and selfless men and women who gave their lives for our freedoms.  We salute you.

“The Patriots blood is the seed of Freedom’s tree.”

-Thomas Campbell

Best wishes,

Kim Sweeney