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GARDENS BY THE BAY

Geranium cinereum 'Laurence Flatman'

EDGING PERENNIALS & THEIR COMPANIONS - 1


Nothing grabs attention in the garden quite like the edgers that set off the entire picture. There are many choices for early spring colour, but unfortunately, their effect is fleeting. Be sure to alternate spring bloomers with later-blooming edgers or plants with attractive foliage all season long.

The visual effect at the perimeter of your beds and borders can persist from earliest spring until well into fall with the edging perennials below, in partnership with any of the many companions suggested. They are the recommendations of many garden writers and creators whose work appears in books, magazines and newspapers everywhere.

Watch for "KILLER COMBOS", a few easy and very special plant partnership ideas that are definitely worth a try.


* Watch for the animated hummingbird and butterfly with the plants that attract them. *
The deer icon indicates plants that deer are not usually attracted to.

The best time and method to propagate plants can be found on our image-intensive PROPAGATION page.

To help your plants grow their best, check out our FERTILIZATION page.

To create your own plant partnerships based on tried and true color theory, check out our GARDEN COLOR page.

To see if a particular plant is on this page press Ctrl+F, type in the name, then click the Find button.


ARABIS

In white or shades of pink, Wall Rock Cress is a perfect perennial to drape over rock edges. After the spring bloom is finished, plants can be cut back and their evergreen foliage will grace your garden borders and beds all year round.

Arabis alpina:  Mountain Rock Cress (the true species in the genus Arabis)

    beside:  Stachys byzantina
Arabis caucasica:  Wall Rock Cress, 8"x12-24"
    Arabis caucasica - a single form
    with:   electric blue-violet Delphinium tricorne (Spring Larkspur)
      interplanted with:  spring bulbs (purple and lavender-striped Crocus), early perennials
        in front of:  Narcissus (white)
          combined with:  Nepeta x faassenii & Phlox subulata
            for overall white effect with:  white Tulipa or Hyacinthus
          Arabis caucasica 'Compinkie':  rosy-pink
            with:  Hyacinthus (blue)
          Arabis caucasica 'Flore Plena':  a double-flowered white
            Arabis caucasica 'Flore Plena'
            seen above draping over a rock edge, beside a white-eyed lavender Phlox subulata
              to tone down:  bright coloured Tulipa
                3-colour effect with:  sky-blue Mertensia virginica & a soft yellow Narcissus
                  beside:  Bergenia cordifolia (pink forms)
                Arabis caucasica 'Snowcap':  Snowcap Arabis
                  with:  Narcissus, Primula veris, Viola
                Arabis caucasica 'Spring Charm':  pink Wall Cress
                  with:  spring bulbs, ferns, spring-blooming wildflowers
                    with:  Viola
                  Additional information about this genus can be accessed by following the links below.

                • pink Arabis
                • white Arabis
                • Arabis with variegated foliage

                • ARMERIA

                  Thrift or Sea Pink, with its grass-like foliage, is a wonderful edger for full sun, in very well-drained soil of poor to average fertility. Where summers are hot, they appreciate some afternoon shade to keep them a bit cooler. Rounded flower heads on long, stiff stems come in shades of pink as well as white.

                  Armeria maritima:  Common Thrift

                    where:  rock and wall gardens, along paths
                  Armeria maritima 'Dusseldorfer Pride':  4"x6", alpine, vibrant pink to rose flowers in dense 1" rounded heads
                    Armerica maritima 'Dusseldorfer Pride'
                    combined with:  Stachys byzantina, Allium schoenoprasum, Salvia x superba, Artemisia (feathery forms) & Achillea
                  Follow the link below for more helpful details about Thrift and its care.

                • pink Thrift

                • ARTEMISIA

                  While the flowers of this genus are insignificant, the foliage can only be called stunning. Most forms prefer well-drained soil in full sun and are drought-tolerant once established. In addition to the tall Artemisias for mid and rear border positions, there are shorter-statured beauties for garden edges. The soft, finely divided foliage of the 'Silver Mound' cultivar below tends to fall open in the heat of mid-summer but can be renewed by hard pruning by one-half to two-thirds.

                  Artemisia schmidtiana nana 'Silver Mound':  Silvermound Artemisia, Wormwood, 6"x12"

                    Artemisia schmidtiana nana 'Silver Mound'
                    to accent:  reds, pinks, yellows, blues or purples
                      to soften:  brighter colours
                        in front of:  Scilla sibirica
                          beside:  Nepeta x faassenii, Dianthus alwoodii
                            with:  Geranium cinereum spp. subcaulescens 'Ballerina' or 'Laurence Flatman'
                              in front of:  Sedum (taller forms), Geranium sanguineum 'Alpenglow'
                                with:  Dendranthema (Garden Mum)
                                  combined with:  Iris pallida 'Aureo-Variegata' & Coreopsis verticillata 'Moonbeam'
                                    to contrast with:  Echinacea purpurea (both foliage and flowers)
                                      with:  Asclepias tuberosa, Aurinia saxatilis, Catananche caerulea, Linum perenne
                                    Artemisia stelleriana 'Silver Brocade':   Perennial Dusty Miller, Beach Sage, 6"x18"
                                      Artemisia 'Silver Brocade'
                                      this is the perennial equivalent of the much planted annual Dusty Miller
                                        beside:  Dianthus gratianopolitanus 'Tiny Rubies'
                                          in front of:  Veronica austriaca 'Crater Lake Blue'
                                        Most Artemisia forms are grown for their interesting foliage, but there are a few grown for the flowers they bear. Whichever ones you choose, you will find the perfect partners to plant with them to enhance their effect at the links below.

                                      • silver foliage Artemisia
                                      • white-flowered Artemisia



                                      • ASTILBE

                                        While many taller Astilbe forms are suitable in borders and woodland gardens, a few shorter or dwarf forms are useful as groundcovers or edgers in a somewhat shady area. In particular the dense, lacy foliage of dwarf Chinese Astilbe coupled with later bloom than most other forms extends the season into late summer.

                                        Astilbe chinensis 'Pumila':  Chinese Astilbe, Dwarf Pink Astilbe, rose-purple in short, dense spikes, 10"

                                        Not all Astilbe are grown at border edges. Many other forms can be found at the links below, along with additional information you will find interesting and informative.

                                      • pink Astilbe
                                      • Astilbe in shade
                                      • white Astilbe

                                      • AUBRIETA

                                        The evergreen foliage of cushion-forming Rock Cress is covered in early spring with 4-petalled flowers of white, pink or purple shades. For luxurious mats of colour, draping over rock edges or planted in pockets in rock walls, there is nothing to compare with this wonderful plant for well-drained soil and full sun. Its early spring bloom gladdens the heart after our long Canadian winters.

                                        Aubrieta deltoidea:  Rock Cress, 6"x12-18", purple

                                          Aubrieta deltoidea - purple Rock Cress with pink Phlox subulatapurple Aubrieta with Euphorbia myrsinites
                                          in front of drifts of bulbs:  Narcissus, Hyacinthus, Muscari, Tulipa
                                            in full sun with:   hardy Geranium, Euphorbia myrsinites
                                              in partial shade with:  Dicentra spectabilis, Brunnera macrophylla, Iris cristata
                                                with:  species bulbs
                                                  with other early edgers:  Arabis, Iberis sempervirens, Aurinia saxatilis
                                                Aubrieta deltoidea:  pink or white
                                                  pink Aubrietaa variety of spring-blooming Aubrieta, Phlox subulata and Arabis caucasica edgers
                                                  seen in the second image from the left above with various spring-blooming Aubrieta, Phlox subulata and Arabis edgers
                                                    with:  Phlox subulata 'Atropurpurea' (variously described as wine-red or rosy-red)
                                                  I love the colour purple in its many guises and the early spring appearance of the forms below is always welcome.

                                                • purple Aubrieta

                                                • AURINIA

                                                  This yellow-flowered spring bloomer comes in a range of tones from pale to lemon-yellow to peachy to gold.

                                                  Aurinia saxatilis:  Basket-of-Gold, 12"x12-24"

                                                    Aurinia saxatilis - Basket of Gold
                                                    with bulbs:  Tulipa (late, especially orangey shades), Myosotis
                                                      with:  Coreopsis (early-blooming), Dianthus, Heuchera sanguinea
                                                        with other early-blooming edgers:  Arabis, Aubrieta, Iberis, Doronicum caucasicum
                                                          with:  Sedum, Pulsatilla vulgaris, Veronica pectinata 'Rosea', Aquilegia alpina
                                                            with:  Phlox subulata, in particular the pale lilac-blue 'Blue Emerald' or rose-pink 'Rosette'
                                                              combined with:  white & lavender plants
                                                            If you need additional information about Basket-of-Gold you will find it at the link below.

                                                          • yellow Basket-of-Gold

                                                          • CERASTIUM

                                                            A perfect groundcover plant for sun, Snow-In-Summer has small white flowers in late spring and early summer. Woolly white foliage adds to the charm as well as to an enduring presence in the garden. If you can provide a slope or rock edge for this perennial to drape over, so much the better.

                                                            Cerastium tomentosum: Snow-In-Summer

                                                              Cerastium tomentosum
                                                              where:  over rock walls, in rock gardens, as pathway edging
                                                                use:  as a foil for magenta, blue or scarlet flowers
                                                                  with:  the equally agressive Oenothera speciosa
                                                                    with blues:  cobalt blue Lobelia, blue dwarf bearded Iris
                                                                      with:  late spring bulbs, Saxifraga, Primula, Campanula spp., Viola tricolor
                                                                        under:  Iris x germanica (tall, deep purple)
                                                                      Follow the link below for even more partnership ideas and information about this perennial.

                                                                    • silver foliage Snow-in-Summer

                                                                    • CHRYSOGONUM

                                                                      A genus of one species only, Golden Star is suitable for rock gardens or as a border edger. Semi-shade is best, especially where summers are hot, as is moist, well-drained, peaty and sandy soil.

                                                                      Chrysoganum virginianum:  Green-and-gold, Goldenstar, Golden Star, 8" tall


                                                                      COREOPSIS

                                                                      Named for the black seeds that follow its flowers, Tickseed has numerous forms suitable for any garden position. If you are only familiar with the taller forms, however, it is time to try some short forms at the edges of your garden. I can promise you won't be disappointed.

                                                                      Coreopsis auriculata 'Nana':  Mouse-Ear Coreopsis, dwarf, 6-9", orange-yellow

                                                                      Summer-long bloom from most Tickseeds is a bonus in any garden, made even better by being partnered with the right plants. Follow the links below for ideas.

                                                                    • orange Tickseed
                                                                    • pink Tickseed
                                                                    • yellow Tickseed

                                                                    • DIANTHUS

                                                                      The common name Pinks comes from the ragged, pinked edges of the flower, not from its colour. Even so, the genus Dianthus runs the gamut of different shades of the colour referred to as pink, from the softest pale pink to the most vibrant of hot pinks imaginable. There are selections of white, purple, rose or even yellow. There are colour blends and many very fragrant forms. Some have single flowers, others double flowers, many with a red eye.

                                                                      No complementary plant is mentioned more often for use with nearly any form of Dianthus than the violet to lavender-blue of Nepeta x faassenii. Could this be the perfect combination?

                                                                      If I could grow only one Dianthus in my garden, it would probably be 'Tiny Rubies' described below. It always invites both comments and caresses from garden visitors. For a profile of this cultivar with all the information you might need to grow it well, follow the link to Dianthus 'Tiny Rubies' - Plant Profile.

                                                                      Dianthus:  Pinks

                                                                        with purple-flowered plants:  Allium, Campanula, Centaurea montana
                                                                          beside:  Nepeta x faassenii, Oenothera macrocarpa (formerly O. missouriensis)
                                                                            with:  Campanula carpatica, Lavandula, Sedum, Thymus
                                                                              in front of:  Campanula glomerata, Scabiosa caucasica
                                                                                under:  Lilium
                                                                                  combined with:  Chrysanthemum coccineum, any blue Iris sibirica & Dictamnus albus
                                                                                Dianthus:  larger species and hybrids
                                                                                  with:  Gypsophila repens, Potentilla spp.
                                                                                    with:  creeping Phlox bifida or Phlox subulata, low Ornamental Grasses i.e. Festuca spp.
                                                                                  Dianthus:  pink forms
                                                                                    in front of:  Campanula glomerata 'Superba'
                                                                                      with:  Saponaria ocymoides
                                                                                    Dianthus:  white
                                                                                      with:  Veronica teucrium 'Shirley Blue' (a clear azure-blue)
                                                                                    Dianthus:  bright pink
                                                                                      bright pink Dianthus
                                                                                      beside:  Nepeta x faassenii
                                                                                        near:   Chrysanthemum coccineum (pale pink)
                                                                                      Dianthus 'Aqua':  Border Pink, double white, 12"x18"
                                                                                        with:  Salvia officinalis 'Icterina'
                                                                                          in front of:  Sedum 'Autumn Joy'
                                                                                        Dianthus 'Bath's Pink':  fringed, soft pink, 6", steel-blue foliage
                                                                                          with:  Scabiosa columbaria 'Butterfly Blue'
                                                                                            with:  Coreopsis verticillata 'Moonbeam' & Pennisetum alopecuroides for 3-season bloom
                                                                                          Dianthus 'Brilliant Cascade':  6"x15", bright crimson
                                                                                            with:  Nepeta x faassenii
                                                                                          Dianthus 'Ideal Violet':  intense reddish-violet, AAS award-winning annual, 10-14"x12"
                                                                                            with:  Artemisia (silver-leaved), Chrysanthemum x superbum
                                                                                              toned down by:   white-flowered plants
                                                                                            Dianthus allwoodii:  Allwood Pinks
                                                                                              with:  Artemisia schmidtiana nana 'Silver Mound'
                                                                                                with:  Aurinia saxatilis, Nepeta x faassenii
                                                                                                  between:  Sedum & Gypsophila repens
                                                                                                    between:  Gypsophila repens & Artemisia 'Silver Mound'
                                                                                                      beside:  Veronica
                                                                                                        in front of:  bearded Iris x germanica
                                                                                                      Dianthus arenarius:  Sand Pink, fragrant, deeply-fringed, white, 8"x12"
                                                                                                        white Dianthus arenarius
                                                                                                        in front of:  Iris x germanica
                                                                                                          between:  Nepeta x faassenii & Iberis sempervirens
                                                                                                            over bulbs:  Iris reticulata, Iris histrioides major
                                                                                                          Dianthus caesius:  Cheddar Pinks, 9-12"x8-12"
                                                                                                            synonym:  Dianthus gratianopolitanus
                                                                                                              with:  Coreopsis verticillata 'Moonbeam', Heuchera sanguinea
                                                                                                                beside:  Phlox subulata (pink forms)
                                                                                                              Dianthus caesius 'Tiny Rubies':  double rose-pink, 4"
                                                                                                                Dianthus 'Tiny Rubies'
                                                                                                                follow the link for a profile of Dianthus 'Tiny Rubies'
                                                                                                                  with:  Nepeta x faassenii, Artemisia stelleriana 'Silver Brocade'
                                                                                                                    combined with:  Thymus x serphyllum 'Coccineus', Dianthus deltoides 'Albus', Veronica austriaca 'Crater Lake Blue' &
                                                                                                                      Geranium sanguineum
                                                                                                                  Dianthus deltoides 'Albus':  Maiden Pinks, white
                                                                                                                    with:  Veronica austriaca 'Crater Lake Blue' (an intense gentian-blue)
                                                                                                                      combined with:  Thymus x serphyllum 'Coccineum', Geranium sanguineum & Dianthus 'Tiny Rubies'
                                                                                                                    Dianthus deltoides:  Maiden Pinks, red Dianthus deltoides 'Zing' or 'Zing Rose':  deep rose-red Dianthus gratianopolitanus 'Little Boy Blue':  very blue foliage, single white flowers with a pink centre
                                                                                                                      with:  Campanula carpatica, Geranium 'Lancastriense', Artemisia 'Silver Brocade', Helictotrichon
                                                                                                                    Dianthus knappii:  a yellow form Dianthus plumarius:  Cottage Pinks
                                                                                                                      Dianthus 'Ballad Blend'
                                                                                                                      the cultivar 'Ballad Blend' above hugs the rock edges of our raised beds with its lovely blue foliage;  the highly scented
                                                                                                                        light pink flowers with a darker pink eye are the icing on the cake
                                                                                                                      with:  Stachys byzantina, Coreopsis verticillata (especially the soft yellow 'Moonbeam')
                                                                                                                        with:  Artemisia, Aquilegia, Nepeta, Lychnis coronaria, Malva moschata
                                                                                                                          beside:  Salvia x superba 'East Friesland' (blue-violet) & Penstemon barbatus (lavender)
                                                                                                                        Dianthus:  Alpine & Maiden Pinks (dwarf, cushion-forming)
                                                                                                                          synonym:  Dianthus alpinus and Dianthus deltoides
                                                                                                                            with:   Campanula spp, Thymus spp, Sedum, Achillea (dwarf)
                                                                                                                              over bulbs:  white or yellow Crocus, Chionodoxa
                                                                                                                            Pinks are not all pink in colour, but they do have "pinked" edges. Check out some of the forms below.

                                                                                                                          • pink Dianthus
                                                                                                                          • red Dianthus
                                                                                                                          • silver foliage Dianthus
                                                                                                                          • white Dianthus
                                                                                                                          • yellow Dianthus

                                                                                                                          • DORONICUM

                                                                                                                            The fringed yellow daisy flowers of Leopard's Bane are a welcome addition to the spring garden picture.  The heart-shaped green leaves above which they bloom is an added bonus.

                                                                                                                            Doronicum caucasicum:   Leopard's Bane, 1-2'x12"

                                                                                                                              Doronicum caucasicum
                                                                                                                              synonym:  Doronicum orientale
                                                                                                                                for May bloom with:  Tulipa or Narcissus
                                                                                                                                  for later bloom with: Narcissus poeticus recurvatus
                                                                                                                                    with:   Campanula glomerata 'Superba', Phlox subulata 'Atropurpurea'
                                                                                                                                      in shade with:  Lunaria annua, Pulmonaria
                                                                                                                                        in partial shade with:   tall blue Myosotis, Brunnera macrophylla, Galium odoratum
                                                                                                                                          in partial shade with:  Mertensia virginica, Phlox divaricata, Dicentra
                                                                                                                                            with:  spring bulbs and wildflowers
                                                                                                                                              surrounded by:   Scilla
                                                                                                                                                combined with:   yellow Aurinia saxatilis & white Iberis in front of soft orange Tulipa


                                                                                                                                              GERANIUM

                                                                                                                                              Prolific British garden writer Margery Fish once said "When in doubt, plant a geranium." She meant, of course, the hardy perennial geranium commonly known as Cranesbill. The name is derived from the appearance of the seed-heads which have the same shape as the bill of a crane.

                                                                                                                                              By and large disease-free, able to grow in almost any soil, requiring minimal care - what else could you ask for in a plant? Available in numerous sizes, flowering in a variety of colours, and with attractive foliage, leaves solid-green, or with dark markings, some with yellow markings, some finely-textured, others broadly palmate, that's what! Some of these many forms are perfectly suitable as garden edgers as you can see from the few listed below.

                                                                                                                                              Geranium cinereum:  Grayleaf Cranesbill

                                                                                                                                                once known botanically as: G. cinereum subspecies subcaulescens varietas subcaulescens
                                                                                                                                                  now properly called:  G. subcaulescens
                                                                                                                                                Geranium cinereum 'Laurence Flatman':  deep pink with dark crimson veining
                                                                                                                                                  Geranium cinereum 'Laurence Flatman'
                                                                                                                                                  seen as well in the border around this page and in the image at the top of the page
                                                                                                                                                    with:  mauve creeping thyme, Viola labridorica, Saxifraga (white) & small version of Saxifraga 'London Pride'
                                                                                                                                                      near:  Scabiosa columbaria 'Blue Butterfly' & 'Pink Mist'
                                                                                                                                                    Geranium himalayense:  Lilac Cranesbill
                                                                                                                                                      also called:  G. grandiflorum and G. meeboldii
                                                                                                                                                    Geranium himalayense 'Plenum':  
                                                                                                                                                      Geranium himalayense 'Plenum'
                                                                                                                                                      what:  a double-flowered form sometimes called 'Birch Double'
                                                                                                                                                      Geranium x oxonianum:  a clump-forming hybrid species
                                                                                                                                                        what:  G. versicolor x G. endressii
                                                                                                                                                          abundant bloom can be found on its many forms including:  
                                                                                                                                                          • 'A.T.Johnson'
                                                                                                                                                          • 'Claridge Druce'
                                                                                                                                                          • 'Julie Brennan'
                                                                                                                                                          • 'Walter's Gift'
                                                                                                                                                          • 'Wargrave Pink'
                                                                                                                                                          • 'Winston Churchill'

                                                                                                                                                        For those wanting to find out more about this wonderful genus and see 450 images that depict the amazing variety of foliage and flowers, you will want to purchase Birgitte Husted Bendtsen's magnificent book, Gardening with Hardy Geraniums.

                                                                                                                                                        Information about the genus and more images as well as partnership ideas can be found by following the links below.


                                                                                                                                                        HEUCHERA

                                                                                                                                                        I used to find the colour of the old coral-toned Coral Bells difficult to place among my other perennials. They were banished from the main beds and relegated to an island bed at the base of a bird bath, where they were alternated with Festuca ovina glauca and could bloom to their heart's content without causing any discord. Now that was a great combination of just two genera!

                                                                                                                                                        Nowadays, of course, there are numerous variations of flower and foliage colour of Heuchera from which to choose. Most can be returned to the garden without fear of clashing with other plants. The combinations suggested below are only a few of the unlimited possibilities.

                                                                                                                                                        Heuchera:  

                                                                                                                                                          with:  Aquilegia, Geranium, Veronica teucrium, Hosta
                                                                                                                                                            with spring bloomers:  ferns, bulbs, Pulmonaria, Dicentra
                                                                                                                                                          Heuchera:  pink or red
                                                                                                                                                            in front of:  Campanula persicifolia (to hide bare lower stems)
                                                                                                                                                          Heuchera:  pink-flowered
                                                                                                                                                            with:  Arrhenatherum (blue Oat Grass)
                                                                                                                                                              between:  Stachys byzantina & Dianthus caesius
                                                                                                                                                                combined with:  Baptisia minor, Geranium endressii 'A.T. Johnson' & Iris sibirica
                                                                                                                                                              Heuchera 'Can Can':  12"x18", white to green flowers, ruffled metallic foliage with silvery overlay, purple undersides
                                                                                                                                                                Heuchera 'Can Can'
                                                                                                                                                                the foliage is the star attraction throughout the summer - blooms are a bonus
                                                                                                                                                              Heuchera 'Canyon Pink':  dwarf, hot pink
                                                                                                                                                                with:  silver-leaved perennials
                                                                                                                                                                  in front of:  variegated Iris
                                                                                                                                                                Heuchera 'Coral Cloud':  coral
                                                                                                                                                                  with:  melon & apricot Hemerocallis
                                                                                                                                                                    combined with:  dwarf Iris cristata in front of Iris sibirica
                                                                                                                                                                  Heuchera 'Gold Strike':  
                                                                                                                                                                    with:  Heuchera 'Amethyst Mist' & dwarf Heuchera 'Canyon Pink'
                                                                                                                                                                  Heuchera 'Plum Pudding':  purple
                                                                                                                                                                    with:  Heuchera 'Silver Veil'
                                                                                                                                                                  Heuchera 'Silver Shadows':  purple, metallic leaves, 26"x16"
                                                                                                                                                                    with:  lime-green Filipendula & deep blue Corydalis 'China Blue'
                                                                                                                                                                  Heuchera 'Silver Veil':  lime-green foliage
                                                                                                                                                                    with:  Heuchera 'Plum Pudding'
                                                                                                                                                                  Heuchera 'Snow Storm':  cerise flowers Heuchera 'Strawberry Swirl':  ice-pink flowers, ruffled foliage, 28"x24"
                                                                                                                                                                    towering over:  Hakonechloa macra
                                                                                                                                                                  Heuchera americana:  American Arumroot, Rock Geranium
                                                                                                                                                                    where:  out of hot afternoon sun
                                                                                                                                                                      with:  ferns, woodland plants
                                                                                                                                                                    Heuchera americana 'Dale's Strain':  gray-green foliage with silver mottling, 28"x15"
                                                                                                                                                                      contrast with:  Lamium maculatum 'White Nancy'
                                                                                                                                                                    Heuchera americana 'Eco-Magnififolia':  silvery/beet Coral Bells
                                                                                                                                                                      Athyrium nipponicum 'Pictum' - Japanese Painted Fern Hosta 'Golden Tiara'Hosta fortunei 'Aureo-Marginata'Hosta 'Carnival'
                                                                                                                                                                      "KILLER COMBO"
                                                                                                                                                                        with:  Athyrium nipponicum (left image above) & any Hosta form with dark green centre and lime-green edges
                                                                                                                                                                          there are many that fit this description - use any of the above or find some on your own that would do just as well
                                                                                                                                                                        Heuchera x brizoides:  Hybrid Coral Bells
                                                                                                                                                                          with:  Geranium, Nepeta x faassenii, Aquilegia
                                                                                                                                                                        Heuchera x brizoides 'June Bride':  large, pure white, bell-shaped flowers (superb), 15"x12"
                                                                                                                                                                          Heuchera x brizoides 'June Bride'
                                                                                                                                                                          with:  Achillea ageratum 'W. B. Child'
                                                                                                                                                                            combined with:  Aquilegia 'Songbird Robin' & Geranium x 'Johnson's Blue'
                                                                                                                                                                          Heuchera x 'Chocolate Ruffles':   brown/burgundy
                                                                                                                                                                            combined with:  Heuchera 'Ruby Veil', Hosta, Astilbe & Pulmonaria
                                                                                                                                                                          Heuchera micrantha 'Bressingham Bronze':   improved 'Palace Purple'
                                                                                                                                                                            with:  Festuca ovina glauca
                                                                                                                                                                          Heuchera micrantha 'Palace Purple':  a seed-grown strain, 1991 Plant of the Year - Perennial Plant Association
                                                                                                                                                                            prefers:  semi-sun or light shade
                                                                                                                                                                              with:  pink, lavender, blue or white flowers
                                                                                                                                                                                for contrast with:  Artemisia x 'Powis Castle'
                                                                                                                                                                                  with:  Coreopsis 'Moonbeam', Nepeta 'Blue Wonder', Geranium 'Johnson's Blue'
                                                                                                                                                                                    amid:  dwarf Iris cristata 'Alba'
                                                                                                                                                                                      in shade with:  Lamium 'Beacon Silver', (blue) Hosta 'Halcyon', Pulmonaria saccharata
                                                                                                                                                                                        with:  Dicentra eximia, Oenothera macrocarpa (formerly O. missouriensis, Liatris spicata, Sedum 'Vera Jameson'
                                                                                                                                                                                          in front of:   Gypsophila paniculata, Digitalis, Allium, Artemisia versicolor
                                                                                                                                                                                        Heuchera sanguinea:  
                                                                                                                                                                                          Coral Bells with coral flowers
                                                                                                                                                                                          in front of:  Salvia 'East Friesland'
                                                                                                                                                                                            beside:  red-foliaged Hen and Chicks
                                                                                                                                                                                              between:  Hosta & Campanula carpatica 'Blue Clips'
                                                                                                                                                                                                between:  Hosta & Tradescantia
                                                                                                                                                                                                  beside:  Hosta plantaginea
                                                                                                                                                                                                    with spring bulbs:   Scilla campanulata, Crocus
                                                                                                                                                                                                      with other spring edgers:  Iberis sempervirens, Viola cornuta, Aurinia saxatilis
                                                                                                                                                                                                        combined with:  yellow Hemerocallis 'Hyperion' & Echinops ritro
                                                                                                                                                                                                          in front of:  Papaver orientale
                                                                                                                                                                                                            beside:   Stachys lanata, Dianthus caesius
                                                                                                                                                                                                          Heuchera sanguinea 'Irish Mist':  red with variegated foliage For more plant partnership ideas as well as interesting and helpful information follow the links below.

                                                                                                                                                                                                        • Coral Bells to attract hummingbirds
                                                                                                                                                                                                        • pink Coral Bells
                                                                                                                                                                                                        • purple Coral Bells
                                                                                                                                                                                                        • red Coral Bells
                                                                                                                                                                                                        • silver foliage Coral Bells
                                                                                                                                                                                                        • white Coral Bells
                                                                                                                                                                                                        • Coral Bells with variegated foliage

                                                                                                                                                                                                        • IBERIS

                                                                                                                                                                                                          Technically a sub-shrub, Candytuft blooms for a long period in early spring with 4-petalled flowers in flat clusters on long stems, densely clothed with narrow evergreen leaves. The pure white flowers break up the intensity of other brightly-coloured spring edgers.

                                                                                                                                                                                                          Iberis sempervirens:   Perennial Candytuft

                                                                                                                                                                                                            Iberis sempervirens - Candytuft
                                                                                                                                                                                                            lovely above with:  white-edged Vinca major 'Variegata'
                                                                                                                                                                                                              where:  edger for walks, walls, borders and beds
                                                                                                                                                                                                                backdrop for spring bulbs:  red Tulipa, yellow Narcissus, purple Muscari
                                                                                                                                                                                                                  especially nice with:  crimson or rose-coloured Tulipa
                                                                                                                                                                                                                    with:  Viola cornuta 'Apricot', Narcissus (yellow & cream), Veronica pectinata (mat-forming types including 'Rosea')
                                                                                                                                                                                                                      with other cascaders over rock edges:  Arabis, Aubrieta, Aurinia saxatilis, low-growing Phlox species
                                                                                                                                                                                                                        over rocks with:  Phlox subulata (most colours) including 'Atropurpurea', Pulsatilla vulgaris (Anemone pulsatilla)
                                                                                                                                                                                                                          in rock garden with:  Dicentra
                                                                                                                                                                                                                            in borders with:  Aquilegia, Myosotis, other spring plants i.e. Paeonia, Baptisia
                                                                                                                                                                                                                              with:  Arabis caucasica, Aurinia saxatilis, Hyacinthus (pink and blue forms), Incarvillea
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                beside:  Heuchera sanguinea
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  combined with:  Tulipa (late types), Phlox subulata (white or pink) & Aurinia saxatilis
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    in front of the following combo:  Doronicum caucasicum (rear), Aurinia saxatilis (edge) & soft orange Tulipa (middle)
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  Iberis sempervirens 'Alexander's White':  
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    with:  any of the partnership ideas suggested for the species in general above
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      with:  spring bulbs, Tulipa, Aquilegia, Myosotis, Dicentra, Aurinia saxatilis, Arabis, Aubrieta deltoidea
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    Iberis sempervirens 'Snowflake':  a larger form, a good edger, 10"
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      with:  any of the combination ideas given for the species in general or the cultivar named above
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        with:  pink or white Phlox subulata
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          in front of:  Baptisia australis
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        Find out more about Iberis and its requirements at the link below.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      • white Candytuft

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      • IRIS

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        The beauty of the Iris is not restricted to the taller Bearded or Siberian Iris forms. Many shorter forms that are just as lovely can be placed at prominent positions at the front of garden beds to be viewed at close range. The shorter forms below will bloom earlier than their taller counterparts.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        Iris cristata:  Crested Iris, rhizomatous, 4-8"

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          combined in part shade with:  Anemone sylvestris & Mertensia virginica
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            woodland combination with:  Stylophorum diphyllum (Celandine Poppy) & Sanguinaria canadensis
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              with:  Azalea, Rhododendron
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                with:  Aubrieta deltoidea 'Large Flowered Mix', Heuchera 'Coral Cloud'
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              Iris cristata 'Abbey's Violet':  the best blue form of Crested Iris
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                with:  Hardy Begonia, Phlox (shade-loving forms), Tiarella cordifolia
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              Iris cristata 'Alba:  Crested Iris, rhizomatous, white
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                with:  Heuchera micrantha 'Palace Purple'
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              Iris 'Banbury Ruffles':  fragrant, royal blue 8-10" dwarf
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                with:  Viola 'White Czar
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              Iris x germanica:  early dwarf bearded
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                with:  Phlox subulata 'Atropurpurea'
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              Iris x germanica:  blue dwarf bearded
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                with:  Cerastium tomentosum
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              Iris x germanica:  dwarf bearded, purple & white
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                Iris - a dwarf purple & white form
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                seen in the image above between:  purple Aubrieta & bright pink Phlox subulata
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              Iris x germanica:  dwarf bearded, apricot
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                combined with:  Phlox subulata (white), Tulipa 'West Point' or 'Niphetos' (yellow shades) & Allium 'Purple Sensation'
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              Iris x germanica:  pale yellow dwarf bearded
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                with:  Veronica pectinata 'Rosea'
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              Iris x germanica:  early bearded, cream to orange shades
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                with:  Phlox subulata (lavender-blue), Tulipa 'Sweet Harmony' (buttery) or Tulipa 'Dillenburg' (peach) &
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  Dicentra spectabilis (white)
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                              Iris pumila:  yellow dwarf
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                Iris pumila
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                seen above with:  Aubrieta for early spring bloom
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  beside:  Muscari for purple-yellow contrast
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                    behind:  Sedum spurium 'Dragon's Blood'
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  Be sure to check out numerous other Iris forms at the links below.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                • blue Iris
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                • bulbous Iris
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                • orange Iris
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                • purple Iris
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                • red Iris
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                • white Iris
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                • yellow Iris
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                • Iris with variegated foliage

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                • FOR MORE EDGING PERENNIALS & THEIR COMPANIONS FOLLOW THE LINK BELOW


                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  All of our own Gardens By The Bay pages can be accessed by clicking on the links below.


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                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  EAST GARDEN  |  HOSTA GARDEN  |  NORTH GARDEN  |  WINTER GARDENS

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  PLANT PARTNERSHIPS

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  BLUE PERENNIALS    Aconitum - Geranium  |  Iris - Vinca

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  BULBS    Allium - Hyacinthus  |  Narcissus only  |  Tulipa only  |  Minor Bulbs

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  BUTTERFLY MAGNETS    Anaphalis - Hemerocallis  |  Liatris - Veronicastrum
                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  DAYLILIES      Spider & Unusual Form

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  EDGERS    Arabis - Iris  |  Nepeta - Veronica

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  FOLIAGE PERENNIALS     Alchemilla - Tanacetum

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  HOSTA    Hosta - all

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  HUMMINGBIRD-FRIENDLY PERENNIALS    Alcea - Salvia

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  ORANGE PERENNIALS    Achillea - Tulipa

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  ORNAMENTAL GRASSES    Acorus - Imperata |  Miscanthus - Spodiopogon

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  PINK PERENNIALS    Achillea - Lilium  |  Lychnis - Veronica

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  PURPLE PERENNIALS    Aconitum - Liatris  |  Polemonium - Veronica

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  RED PERENNIALS    Achillea - Veronica

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  SHADE PERENNIALS    Aegopodium - Erythronium  |  Ferns - Polemonium  |  Polygonatum - Vinca

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  SILVER FOLIAGE PERENNIALS    Achillea - Cerastium    |    Cornus - Limonium    |    Lunaria - Veronica

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  SIMPLY SPECIAL PERENNIALS    Acanthus - Saxifraga

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  WHITE PERENNIALS    Achillea - Iris  |  Kalimeris - Yucca

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  YELLOW PERENNIALS    Achillea - Hypericum  |  Inula - Verbascum

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  VARIEGATED-FOLIAGE PERENNIALS    Acorus - Erythronium  |  Hakonechloa - Lysimachia  |  Miscanthus - Yucca

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  PLANT PROFILES

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  Dianthus 'Tiny Rubies'  |  Geranium  |  Geum coccineum  |  Kerria japonica  |  Knautia macedonica

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  Paeonia tenuifolia  |  Papaver somniferum  |  Rudbeckia  |  Salvia 'East Friesland'

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  Trollius  |  Veronica 'Sunny Border Blue'

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  PROPAGATION

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  DIVISION - SPRING ONLY  |   DIVISION - FALL ONLY  |   DIVISION - SPRING OR FALL  |   DO NOT DIVIDE

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  FERTILIZATION

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                  BULBS  |   ORNAMENTAL GRASSES  |   PERENNIALS  |   SHRUBS  |   VINES

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