When discussing flower gardens, the term “seasonal color” is used often. Although some may interpret that to mean only spring or summer, it can also mean four- season color. Plants bloom in fall as well as spring and summer. However, you shouldn’t limit yourself to just one kind of plant. And in winter you need to depend on plants’ other color attributes. This means mixing woody shrubs, perennials, bulbs, annuals and even trees.
Spring is here, according to the calendar. Soon, the bright yellow blooms will appear on forsythia. The crocuses push their way up tnrough snow if there is any. Absent the white stuff, they just push up through the soil and announce that spring is here. Crocuses are followed closely by daffodils, tulips and hyacinths. Hellebores also bloom in the early spring.
After the spring bulbs are through flowering, shrubs like azaleas, rhododendrons, peonies and, of course a Rochester favorite, the lilac bloom. Then, in summer, roses begin to bloom, as do hydrangeas, cone flowers, spireas and other perennials. Depending on the variety, you can expect viburnum shrubs to bloom in either spring or summer.
Knowing the blooming time of these shrubs and perennials, you can plan which annuals you want to plant to supplement and complement them. Pansies are early bloomers here. And their flowers last for a long time. As spring becomes summer, you can plant the better known annuals like petunias, marigolds, geraniums, begonias, and the list goes on.
As summer fades into fall, perennials like asters bloom, as do witch hazel and such sedums as Autumn joy. And then there’s the iconic chrysanthemums (mums), a symbol of fall. You can also enjoy fall blooming bulbs like fall crocus. Plant them in September and they bloom a few weeks later. Many people do a double take when they see these flowers, one of the first to welcome fair weather, also bidding farewell to summer.
When winter arrives, your sources of color transition from flowers to colorful tree bark, conifers’ green needles, ornamental grasses and holly berries.
Our designers can help you with the planning process and our installation professionals can help you with the planting to any extent you want.
As you can imagine, that technique gets used a lot here where there is something to bloom in every season. Sometimes though, there is something to be said for the garden simply taking a break. In the redwoods, simple deep green foliage is just fine for much of the year. Flowers are nice accents, but are not always necessary.