Colors are one of the most effective design ingredients in creating a garden. And plants are overall the easiest and most influential factor where color and variation can be established and managed.
However, for countless gardeners and home landscapers in their search for perfect color combinations, there is another segment to plants that is often neglected as a design element. And that would be in the many marvelous and contrasted textures of plants. Especially in green plants.
Green plants not only assist as a color principle like any other color, but can also be used as a neutral transitional color that blends other elements and colors together. Or basically, as a filler or where one space of the garden changes to the next. Natural transition is so important in creating a garden design.
I was reminded just recently as I was talking with a customer of how many people really don’t think of green plants as being a design ingredient in designing gardens.
As we went over her design plan I pointed out that we had four colors in her design project and that we needed to repeat them throughout the design to form a little balance. She then stated that we only had three colors in her design.
I knew exactly what she was trying to say by that because it’s what most people think. Green isn’t in itself a true color. It’s just the thread that holds the real colored elements in place.
Now if we pictured green as just being a neutral element, I probably could go along with this. However, as a professional, I observe it in a much different way. There are countless shades of green. Each can hold many varying textures that can create such exquisite contrasts to design with.
Some of the most colorful and lush landscape designs I’ve ever observed have just simply displayed this single color in many variations. Light greens, dark greens, yellow greens, etc. And I haven’t even made mention of texture here. Even the same shade of green in different textures often creates a fascinating contrast for designing purposes.
Try and picture the abundance and beauty of a dark jungle. Their beauty and contrast are commonly made up by the many different variations of shade and texture and not vivid colors. Shady landscapes that compare to a deep forest or jungle are rather beautiful all by themselves.
Keep this in mind when making plans for your next garden. Just as one illustration, a combining of Hostas, Ferns, and Showy Grasses can bring about a very remarkable and eye catching display simply using the color green.
So maybe green really is a color.
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