Before I get to the plan, let me say… I do LOVE color!
Bursts of orange, yellow, red, green ~ my red kitchen, Ava’s peacock blue walls & Lara’s purple paradise. Not to mention the riot of color in the front garden!
So this plan has not been made lightly & has taken a few years to take shape. What plan you say…?
I know you are on the edge of your garden stool, so I will get to the point…
My plan is to create a “white” garden in my backyard a’la Sissinghurst Castle.
My backyard is the perfect spot for such a white, grey & green garden. Half in the shade and half in the sun, with white jasmine covering everything it can wrap it’s tendrils around.
It always bugged me that one side was all green & textured while the other sunny side was a wash in blooms of every color. No real flow, and I like flow almost as much as I like symmetry.
The garden battle wore on ~ variety and color verses balance and white. The former always won, until this year.
A few years ago, my garden club had a tour of my friend’s beautiful home & garden. She has an all white garden a’la Sissinghurst & it left quite an impression. (Ginny, you reading this?). I kept the thought in back of my mind and did my research.
Let me share a bit of what I learned. Sissinghurst Castle is a medieval manor in Kent, UK.
In the 1930’s husband & wife team, Harlod Nicolson & Vita Sackville-West took over the gardens. Harold, a diplomat & author, laid down the main lines of the design & Vita, a poet & garden writer, the plantings.
Vita was an artist gardener ( aren’t we all? ). It is said her most brilliant and influential garden among all the gardens at Sissinghurst is the white garden. In part because it conveys the the idea of color themes introduced by Gertrude Jekyll.
These are my recommendations for planting a white garden:
- Use a variety of textures to keep it interesting
- As in any garden, use 3-5 plants of each foundational plant and one or two focal ( POW!) plants
- Vary the heights from back to front ~ tall, medium & border plants in front
- Use variegated foundational plants, such as boxwood
- Plant a few climbers on a wall, fence or garden ornament
Here are a few suggestions for a nice variety plants for your white garden:
- green or variegated Boxwood
- white Iceberg Roses
- Dusty Miller
- Duchess of Edinburgh clematis (her feet on the shade rest in the sun)
- Anemone – Honorine Jobert (watch out she is a spreader!)
- Delphinium Snowgoose
- Echinacea White Swan
- Allium Mount Everest
- White Jasmine
- white Impatiens
- Shasta or other white daisies
Shouldn’t take more than a few days to get my white garden planted once I get rolling, as I don’t have quite as much land to cover as ole’ Vita did.
May even drag out that urn from the living room and wash it in white paint to add a focal point to the new garden. Anybody want the twigs?
** Kelly **