Favorite Plant Combinations: May

– Posted in: Design

Plum-colored hellebore and passalong narcissus backlit by afternoon sunThis looked spectacular earlier in May, but the narcissus were already done by the time Gardeners Bloom Day came around.

Hellebore and narcissus with grape hyacinths but no backlightingThose orange-cup daffodils were blooming at my neighbor’s, between her house and the brook, but too far away from the house to be noticed. I marked them and dug them up and got half for myself for the labor of digging and replanting her half. The hellebore came from Seneca Hill Perennials. I didn’t plan this combination. The daffodils were already there; the hellebore was an unexpected gift that I had to “put somewhere,” and that’s where I thought the hellebore would be happy.

I’ve since surrounded these two with some grape hyacinths that bloomed somewhat after the peak of these two, and there weren’t enough of them to make an impact this year.

What do you think?

About the Author

Kathy Purdy is a colchicum evangelist, converting unsuspecting gardeners into colchicophiles. She would be delighted to speak to your group about colchicums or other gardening topics. Kathy’s been writing since 4th grade, gardening since high school, and blogging since 2002.

Autumn is a second spring when every leaf is a flower.

~Albert Camus in Albert Camus quotations

Comments on this entry are closed.

cyndy June 12, 2007, 7:56 pm

Wow! I love that combination, Kathy! It is spectacular! (i’m one for lots of contrast~)

Kathy Purdy May 25, 2007, 11:22 am

Bergenia sounds like another good choice, but I am not sure if it is evergreen in my climate. Not that it matters too much if it’s buried in snow, which is the usual case in winter.

Carolyngail May 24, 2007, 9:21 pm

I like your combination, Kathy. If anything, I’d add something like Bergenia Cordifolia , an evergreen with bold leaves and a nice pink flower.

Carolyngail May 24, 2007, 9:20 pm

What do I think? I think that your combination is wonderful. I would add Bergenia, which has bold evergreen foilage and a great stalk of pink flowers.

Kathy Purdy May 22, 2007, 9:36 am

Kim–my first response, only half-joking, was: weeds. But actually, just beyond the narcissus are some daylilies. The daylilies were there first, and I can’t remember now if they coordinate with the hellebore foliage or not. The hellebore blossoms are history by the time the daylily blooms.

Ted–I’ve got enough ajuga other places, but I really like your idea of a purple-leafed heuchera of some sort. Do you know of any that have spectacular foliage and prominent flowers, like ‘Raspberry Regal’ does?

Ted B May 20, 2007, 9:23 pm

Purple and orange are always a great combination. How about adding a little purple foliage – ajuga, heuchera or the like?

Kim May 20, 2007, 6:04 pm

I like it a lot, Kathy–especially backlit like it is in the first picture. The deep rose of the hellebore adds some nice warmth to the whole scene. What do you put around the hellebore once the daffs die off?

Kathy Purdy May 18, 2007, 5:26 pm

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