Landscaping with flowers can help add interest, fragrance, and color to your exterior. The flowers are having a little while and our love for introducing these beautiful blooms just about anywhere in our homes shows no signs of abating.
So, with spring in full force, why not try some of these flower bed ideas and container gardening tips in your outdoor space? According to garden expert Rob Brett of the Royal Horticultural Society, virtually any garden, yard, roof or balcony can be landscaped with flowers. He says, “As long as you choose the right plant for the right place, then yes, absolutely. Flowers add structure, style and fragrance to gardens of all shapes and sizes, whether it’s an urban courtyard, a sprawling meadow or a window box.
The only word of warning? Remember to choose your flowers wisely to ensure you create a garden that has maximum interest all year round, not just seasonally. To help you turn your outdoors into a flower haven, we asked gardening experts where to start when it comes to landscaping with flowers, which flowers are best to use, and what factors you should keep in mind. mind.
Here’s how you can start decorating with flowers
1. Start with weed
Who knew wild weed could be so popular? We’ve already seen the return of feather plumes as people relearn how to grow pampas grass. But now there are also new grasses to grow.
But where do you start? “You have to start with the grasses first,” says Rob Brett, curator at RHS Garden Hyde Hall, Chelmsford. “There is such diversity – for example, tall, dwarf, broad – and a range of colors and tones, especially in autumn and winter. A mixture of herbs in our dry garden (an area of the garden that has never been watered by hand) works well, becoming a landscape feature in its own right.
Rob’s best weed choice? “I would recommend plants such as Cortaderia, Miscanthus and Stipa,” he tells us.
2. Use herbs to create a defined line
Once you have chosen the grasses, now is the time to seriously think about where you might place them. According to Rob, you want to use your herbs to create a defined line to help guide the eye to different areas around your outdoor space and give it some structure.
R ‘At RHS Garden Hyde Hall we use tall structural grasses such as virgatum panic ‘Northwind’ in our beds, as well as herbaceous plants such as Helenium, Rudbeckia, Echinacea, Phlomis and shrubs such as roses, viburnums,” says Rob.
“In some areas we also used it to create a defined line, similar to the structure a small hedge would achieve.” It’s a great idea if you’re looking to incorporate a little more privacy into your small space.
3. Contrast your shrubs
Variety is the spice of life. And when it comes to plants, the same idea rings true. So contrast your grasses and plants and juxtapose old favorites with newer, more modern styles for a polished look. The same goes for color. Pair more neutral colored plants with bright and beautiful arrangements.
“Finally, one of my favorite designs is the use of bulbous materials among Deschampsia in the modern courtyard garden,” says Rob. “The way the Dierama and Allium ‘Forelock’ soar through and above the wispy grass has, in my opinion, been a marvel.”
If you’re working with a small deck, compact lot, or jewel balcony, some of the best plants for small gardens can be used in the same way.
4. Choose the right plant and the right place
Plants are living beings. If given the right conditions, they will thrive. But in the wrong environment, they will wither without releasing their true potential.
“Consider soil conditions,” says Rob, “as well as appearance and surroundings and choose your plant from there.”
If you have a sunless garden, it’s important to discover the best shade garden ideas to brighten up your shady space and use shade-loving plants, more than a dose of vitamin D.
Whereas if your garden faces south, and therefore benefits from some rays throughout the day, invest in plants that can withstand drier conditions.
5. Incorporate out of the ordinary
In addition to being able to spruce up your lawn, landscaping with flowers also gives you the opportunity to get creative with the flowers of your choice.
“Ask yourself what feeling you’re looking for,” says Rob. “Walking in public gardens can help to inspire. I’m always tempted to look for ways to be a little unusual, incorporating out-of-the-ordinary elements wherever possible.
If space permits and your conditions are right, why not give Fleabane a try? The hard-working factory tops our list of five most beautiful flowers to plant right now for more than one reason. It blooms for nine months of the year and it is a spreader. Thus, dull spots will soon be brought back to life.
While the easy-to-grow exotic-looking flower, agapanthus, deserves a place in any (and every) outdoor space. Just be warned: they need full sun and fertile soil to help them bloom.
6. Create cohesion with your choices
So you’ve picked your plants, checked the planting conditions and chosen flowers that are a little out of the ordinary. But how do you create a landscaped garden you can be proud of?
One of the easiest and quickest ideas to help add interest without going through OTT is to create cohesion. Whether it’s the repetition of shapes, color, height or style of flowers, all of the above help to guide the eye around the landscape in a cohesive and assembled way.
7. Think about color, height and succession
With over 350,000 species of plants in the world (and counting), you’re spoiled for choice when it comes to choosing the ones you want in your outdoors.
One way to help you choose your flowers wisely is to think about the colors you want in your garden, as well as their height and succession.
“The flowers are colorful in front of the texture of the foliage,” says gardener Jo Thompson, author of The Gardener’s Palette, which will soon be published. “So I first start thinking about the seasons in which I want the color. Then I look at the height and the succession of the flowers in that season.
If you pick tall flowers, like your humble sunflower or an oriental lily, consider planting them in the back of your flower bed. Or, if you plan to front grow them, plant them deeper in the ground so your other flowers can be seen.
8. Add roses for a classic look
Want a hardy flower to add to your landscape? “As a rose lover, I think there’s a rose for every garden,” Jo tells us.
And we agree. Hardy, easy to grow and even easier to care for, roses seem to be one of the best floral trends that never go out of style. Plus, once they’re in full bloom, why not have the best of both worlds by picking them and bringing them indoors?
Jo adds: “The simple single-flowered varieties look beautiful in a natural, more relaxed, even wild setting, while the fuller ones look beautiful in a mixed border. Romantic and generally fragrant, you can’t go wrong with a rose.
9. Incorporate planters into your landscaping
When you’re landscaping your garden, you don’t just have to restrict your planting space by planting in your flower beds. Think outside the box – especially if your garden involves more landscaping than landscaping.
Planters or container gardening are a great way to maximize your growth potential.
“Have lightweight planters full of estate bulbs all year round on a table so you can really appreciate the tiny spring bulbs up close, and later feel absolutely surrounded by tulips,” says Jo. “Later, when the dahlias arrive, I repot the planters and baskets on the ground.”
10. Create a course
As we have just seen, flowers and tall grasses can act as hedges in your exterior. But they can also be used as a modern garden idea to delineate a driveway and create a riot of color to help you transition from one area of your garden to another.
Perennial flowers (which will live for a few years) are best suited for most outdoor locations because they can survive wet winters. However, for a quick and fabulous fix, add annuals to the mix to help bring an instant splash of color to your garden.
What flowers go well together?
We would take inspiration from the top floral trends that indicate bold hues are in this season. Go for a colorful mix and try to steer clear of the blush petal fad of the past few years.
When planting, one school of thought is to color the block. This means planting flowers of similar colors next to each other. For example, pink, purple, and red all belong to the same color family, so they would all work well next to each other and make for an eye-catching scene.
But also consider planting wild grass behind your borders. This will add structure and texture and fill in any gaps you have.
However, to ensure you create a calm, collected outdoor space rather than a chaotic space, before you take the plants out of their pots and plant them in the ground, spend some time arranging (and rearranging) them next to each other to make sure they complement each other.
And while it’s all well and good to choose plants that look great next to each other, you’ll also want to think about how much water and nutrients each of your flowers needs. You want to create a balanced ecosystem in which your flowers will thrive.