Many hues a true de­light

Pilbara News - - Property - Deryn Thorpe

One of my gar­den am­bi­tions is to cre­ate a space that has lots of colour at all times of the year.

At the mo­ment, I’m lov­ing the flow­ers on the salvias, es­pe­cially the 10cm pur­ple-blue spikes on the An­thony Parker plants.

The bush is drought and frost­tol­er­ant, grow­ing to about 1.8m tall and wide, flow­er­ing from sum­mer un­til the start of win­ter.

It at­tracts lots of small birds that feed on the nec­tar, bal­anc­ing del­i­cately on the arch­ing stems.

I’ve just planted a new salvia va­ri­ety to com­ple­ment it called Go Go Pur­ple, which prom­ises to be a bit smaller at 1.2m high and about a me­tre wide.

Whole­salers have said it flow­ers year round as long as the spent flow­ers are snipped off.

I’ve had it for about six weeks and it’s been bloom­ing non-stop so far, so I’m hop­ing it lives up to the prom­ise.

It’s not just flow­ers that pro­vide colour in the gar­den.

The leaves on my for­est pansy tree have turned golden yel­low and as they fall cre­ate a pud­dle of yel­low be­neath the branches.

Grow­ing about 5m tall and wide, it is my favourite small tree be­cause in spring it will have gor­geous mauve flow­ers fol­lowed by bur­gundy leaves.

Adding colour at ground level are my pur­ple and lime-leafed or­na­men­tal sweet pota­toes and a small blood leaf (ire­sine) bush which has fleshy, hot pink leaves.

Both plants are semi-trop­i­cal and grow re­ally eas­ily from cut­tings. I placed 10cm-long cut­tings in a glass of wa­ter, plant­ing them into the gar­den once the roots appeared.

The sweet pota­toes have a trail­ing habit and I grow some in pots and hang­ing bas­kets and let oth­ers romp through the gar­den beds. The lime-leaf va­ri­ety is a bit ten­der, dy­ing back in win­ter in Perth but ma­ture plants reshoot when the weather warms in spring. Deryn Thorpe vis­its homes for gar­den con­sul­tan­cies. Email dthorpe@am­net.net.au or visit deryn­thorpe.com.au.

Pic­ture: Iain Gille­spie

Plant wisely and you can en­joy year-round colour in the gar­den.

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