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Friday, March 27, 2020 AnnualsPerennials

Color Commentary: Using Orange Flowers in the Garden

It’s easy to turn a drab backyard into a festival of bold color when you add some orange flowering annuals or perennials into the plan.

Orange bloomers, which combine the best attributes of their red- and yellow-flowering cousins add a warm, tropical feeling to any setting. Yet, these vibrant bloomers, when used in large numbers, can steal all the attention from their less bright neighbors.

So, it’s a good idea to use them as accent plants scattered through your landscape rather than in large drifts or clumps. Orange flowers look great mixed with yellow, blue, or purple in containers or in pots and planters.

Shades of orange vary from pale hues such as honey, melon, and carrot, to bold, darker shades such as clay, rust, and bronze. Good color combinations for orange flowers include purple, yellow, silver, and white. Again, remember not to overdo it when you are using orange flowers. In a basket or container, for example, use orange flowers as a secondary role as the “filler” or “spiller” plant instead of taking center stage as the “thriller.” Think of them as showy back-up singers who should support, but no overpower the star.

Some of our favorite orange annual flowers include: calendula, marigold, impatiens, pansy, celosia, annual geranium, nasturtium, lantana, California poppy, purslane, crossandra, dahlia, canna, zinnia, kalanchoe, gazania, sunflower, coleus, cosmos, and begonia.

Top orange-flowering perennial flowers include: geum, gaillardia, butterfly weed, Asiatic lily, chrysanthemum, kniphofia, helenium, coneflower, Oriental poppy, heuchera, coreopsis, daylily, penstemon, bee balm, Cape honeysuckle, and ixora.

 

Written by:
Doug Jimerson

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