One of the most important tasks our designers undertake is to include ‘notes’ of all five human senses into clients’ landscape designs. We’re devotees of landscapes that proactively bring the outdoors into the personal everyday experience through sound, sight, taste, smell, and touch.
Some plants just invite more attention than others in the landscape. It could be their showy color, exuberant growing habit, or interesting shape. These ‘entertainers’ of the garden delight homeowners and their visitors, drawing attention to the landscape and bringing us fully into the present.
Here is a list of plants we like to include into our designs when we want to imbue pops of color, interesting textures and shapes, or grand gestures:
Allium – their large lollipop blooms instantly draw attention and are a bit hit with kids. Smell like onions.
Black Eyed Susan – bright gold with black center, easy to grow, and always a cheerful sight in the garden. Wonderful as cut long-lasting cut flowers.
Clematis – comes in a multitude of striped or gorgeously saturated solid colors, this vine produces masses of flowers with striking centers and tolerate less than stellar growing conditions.
Autumn Joy Sedum – this easy to grow succulent has green waxy leaves and fall blooming flowers that are a gorgeous pink/red/salmon color. Deer seem to steer clear of them and they don’t mind arid climates in the least.
Scadoxus (blood lily) – the giant globe-like bloom of this bright red bulb is a real showstopper. Looks like a firecracker attached to a growing stem.
Snapdragons – a great perennial to include in any garden, the petals of the stalk-like blooms are velvety to the touch, fun for kids to ‘pinch’ open and closed, and have a beautiful, deep scent
Zinnias – annual plants that provide incredible color and never fail to cheer even the grumpiest garden visitor
Herbs – plant your favorites right in the ground in summer and encourage kids and visitors experience their heavenly pungent smell and taste.