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Summer Ideas

Check out these ideas to inspire you this summer!

  • Wild & Casual

    Grouping “airy” plants together gives a wild, casual look. African basil provides a bit of color, a scented geranium gives the composition heft, and a Plectranthus gives a look of abundance by spilling to the ground.

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  • Sensational Container Garden

    This sensational container garden is composed of two coleus varieties, one red and one chartreuse; a pale pink Dragonwing begonia, deep pink calibrachoa; red gerbera daisy; and variegated Duranta, and golden Lysimachia. The repeated theme of chartreuse foliage is what holds this complicated composition together.

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  • Wildflower Effect

    This exciting hot-colored, summer border is composed of Verbena bonariensis, Salvia clevelandii, yellow verbascum and red penstemon. The airy quality of the plants create a stunning wildflower effect.

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  • Color pop

    No summer garden should be without black-eyed Susans or Rudbeckia. Make the color pop by contrasting with various red New Zealand flaxes, large and small. Peeking over the tops of the black-eyed Susans is a clump of Russian sage, or Perovskia.

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  • Heat-lovers

    Daylilies thrive in even the most brutal heat. Pair them with other heat-lovers like Jerusalem sage and salvias.


    Learn about other great ideas for waterwise heatlovers >

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  • Succulents and Aloes

    Succulents and aloes provide wonderful, low-care architectural interest, and are great choices for containers. The rosette of a red Aeonium becomes the focal point and a sedum spills out to the side. Check out other Inspiring Succulent ideas on Pinterest >

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  • Create a Calming Effect

    When plants are massed, they give a calming effect. The large clump of silvery artemesia sets off the hot pink shrub rose, catmint and other low-growing herbs—all clumped for greater effect.

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  • Hot Colors

    Hot colors are perfect choices for summer borders since strong sun can wash out pastels. Here, Alstroemeria and gaillardia provide the punch, with salvias providing complementary contrast. Lilies, cosmos and penstemon add to the cottage garden look.

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  • Repeating colors

    Repeating colors provides unity in plant compositions. Here, the red tones of Japanese bloodgrass echo the red stems of the ornamental banana and perilla as well as the leaves of red barberry. The pink coneflower gives this combination the kick it needs.

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  • Wonderful textural contrast

    In summer, ornamental grasses provide wonderful textural contrast with shrub roses and perennials. With the slightest breeze, these colorful grasses provide relaxing movement. The spikey foliage of New Zealand flax provides a dramatic focal point.

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