Creating a Garden of Pink and White Flowers
Choosing a Color Scheme for the Garden
Choosing a color scheme doesn't just happen out of the blue - it takes a lot of thought and planning; and sometimes waiting a long time for plants to bloom, before finding that the show isn't quite what you thought it was going to be.
When I first designed my own garden, there was a lot of orange, and, even this year, later on in Summer there will be some orange montbretia in flower, but I decided that pink was the way to go, because I already had some pink roses growing in the garden, one of them a dog rose which has been there for over fifty years. There are also a lot of pink Japanese anemones, which flower in summer and autumn and are somewhat invasive, but very beautiful, so I let them take hold.
I do love a color co-ordinated garden - don't you?
All the photographs on this page are pictures of my own garden in London. That way you can see that I am practising what I preach.
About three years ago I decided to change my front garden to English Cottage Garden style
I removed all the grass, put in some paving stones in the shape of a cross, and planted lots of things in the spaces
I encountered a certain amount of opposition from professional gardeners more knowledgeable than me, but I was determined to try it anyway. Sometimes being obstinate and headstrong brings out good results, because I had a steady and fixed idea of what I wanted. That works in all walks of life, actually.
I like to have blocks of color, and it is almost a point of honor with me to have a garden with something flowering somewhere every month of the year, even December and January. So I have a few shrubs which have colorful berries in winter, such as pernettya with white berries, cotoneaster with red berries, and mahonia, a bush with blackberries, as well as hellebores which show their buds in January and open into greeny-white flowers. My roses had a few flowers until the end of December, and my fuschias actually flowered throughout winter and spring which is unusual, but the winter was a bit strange too.
It's important to water your plants when they are first getting established and when they are dry - Here's an ornamental hosereel which would grace any garden
Lychnis and Phlox
Pink Phlox and Lychnis - Abbotswood Rose - Rose Campion
Perennials which Flower in late Spring and Summer
Phlox is a very easy to grow perennial, and you can propagate it by dividing the roots in early Spring. It always gives a good show, and continues flowering much longer if you dead-head the flowers as they fade.
The Lychnis plant bears dazzlingly bright dark pink flowers with silvery-grey foliage and will grow in full sun or partial shade in poor soil. Height: 18-24 ins.
You need to dead-head it regularly to prolong flowering, but allow some of the seed heads to develop and ripen, and then collect them if you want to grow more plants.
Walk along the path a little further, and you see Cornus, Spirea and Heuchera
Cornus, Spirea and Heuchera
On the left of the picture above is a Cornus. The pale green leaves are edged with white and are slightly tinged with pink. It grows vigorously and, as it is deciduous, it sheds its leaves in winter. I have to cut it back very vigorously to stop it spreading upwards and outwards.
Next to that is a Spirea. It is also quite vigorous and I do cut it back a bit in Spring, but can't bear to cut it back too hard, because in June and July it has the daintiest flowers imaginable, bearing pink and white heads of flowers on the same bush. The flowers soon fade to brown and at that stage I do cut the bush back, because it spreads over the pathway and is a nuisance when the branches get stuck in the windows when they are closed.
Right at the bottom is Heuchera, with small pink flowers on stems, flowering from spring through summer.
This is the Pink and White Color Scheme Outside my Front Window - It's quite effective, isn't it? I'm quite proud of it
Cornus, Spirea, Hollyhock and Hydrangea
In front of the cornus and spirea is an exquisite pale pink Hollyhock, also known as Alcea. It took ages for hollyhocks to establish themselves in my garden, but now, as they are perennial, they grow up every year and seed themselves. Sadly they are subject to rust, and the lower leaves get eaten by slugs and snails, so I have to keep an eye on them, and spray when necessary.
To the right, almost out of view, is a hydrangea, which has white flowers tinged with pink.
If you want a focal point in your garden, how about an Obelisk? - I love saying "obelisk" - some words just sound good!
This would look lovely entwined with roses, clematis or any other climber, and even if they die back in winter, the obelisk itself still looks good