Plant tapestry of ornamental onions seedheads (Allium), grasses, perennials, and shrubs in waterwise drought tolerant mixed border demonstration garden at Bellevue Botanic Garden, near Seattle Washington
Japanese Hakone Grass grows vey well in part shade. Its golden leaves have a weeping effect and its brightness in the shade draws the eye. Twelve to eighteen inches tall, a tough plant that likes moist soil. Deer won’t eat this one.
Hibiscus acetosella Red Shield at Hayefield.com - Cranberry hibiscus makes an excellent short-term foliage contribution while you’re waiting for an equally dark but slower-growing woody plant, such as Diabolo ninebark (Physocarpus opulifolius ‘Monlo’) or a purple smokebush (Cotinus). In mild climates, it can be a shrub in its own right; it’s reportedly hardy in Zone 8 to 11.
New gardeners beware! One of the worst rookie mistakes we can make is to introduce invasive plants into our gardens. I ignored a lot of good advice when I started out, but honestly, no one warned me about these plants. With the emphasis on the benefits of local growing and shopping, I think we’re a …
Be Bold with Fine Texture | Fine GardeningSoftness in the garden can come in many forms: small leaves, like ‘Purple Emperor’ sedum ( Sedum ‘Purple Emperor’, Zones 3–7, far left); needled foliage, like ‘Sea Foam’ artemisia ( Artemisia versicolor ‘Sea Foam’, Zones 4–10, center); and airy blossoms, like ‘Elfin Pink’ beardlip penstemon ( Penstemon barbatus ‘Elfin Pink’, Zones 4–9, near left).
Here is another example of a good plant combination that also uses the ‘Ivory Halo’ dogwood and another allium. These are ‘Purple Sensation,’ and behind them, around the river birches, you can see Karl Foerster feather reed grasses (Calamagrostis). When the alliums disappear the grasses, which stay tall and erect, are a beautiful wheat color. https://melissaclarkphotography.files.wordpress.com/2010/01/alliums-and-birches_collins_400w.jpg?w=450