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January 30, 2009, 2:10 pm betterhomesgardens
Green is the colour for the busy person who gardens.
Go green! With colour limited to green, shape and form assume a new importance.
Note: the colours of paving, fences and the house will play a part in the overall effect too.
Even in a cool-climate winter when the deciduous trees and shrubs stand bare and the herbaceous perennials have retired underground, there are plenty of evergreens to keep the green theme alive. When you cultivate an eye for green, it is wonderful how many different shades there are: from emerald, olive, silvery and greyish greens to the almost yellow tones of the young leaves of deciduous trees in spring.
Add to that the variety of shapes and sizes that leaves offer, and you have as rich a palette as any garden artist could ask for. There is no need to worry about subtlety in deploying it - that you have limited yourself to shades of the one colour guarantees that.
Surprisingly there are many green flowers even if they are not as showy as the colourful ones. Few actually have green petals: most make their display with green sepals or from green bracts that give importance to otherwise insignificant flowers. Among these are the green euphorbias, of which this one, the late-spring blooming Euphorbia wulfenii, is perhaps the best known. You may find it listed as E. characias subspecies wulfenii: the exact classification of the several hundred species of Euphorbia is a headache for botanists. Like most green flowers, it remains in beauty for along time.
A green garden is not a bland one either. There are greens of every intensity, from the palest to almost black. The colour of the leaf is influenced by its texture: the exact same shade will look subtly different if the surface is matt or if it's glossy. A green garden gives you scope to experiment with contrasts. Think, for instance, of the boldly cut leaves of acanthus set against a wall clad in a small-leaved ivy, or of the spiky leaves of irises contrasted with the round ones of nasturtiums.Source:Making Beautiful Gardens (Murdoch Books)
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