Many hues a true delight
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 firstname.lastname@example.org or visit derynthorpe.com.au.
Plant wisely and you can enjoy year-round colour in the garden.