Many decorative shrubs and climbers add colour and character to an area and highlight the changing seasons.
A garden is full of colour- one’s first thought is always for flower colour but interest is also given by fruits, berries and of course foliage. There is always a base colour of green in an array of different tones - dark, light, greys, blues, yellows, etc.
For best results, keep the colour scheme in the garden simple by sticking to one, two or three tones and not a riot of colours. This planned, unified look can be given to the garden either by mass planting groups of the same plant or by repeating the same colours but using different plant types.
The choice of colourful plants is endless, one can start by choosing which type of colours to use and then decide on the plant variety accordingly.
Hot colours for example, like red, yellow or orange, during cool seasons will give a feeling of warmth while in summer, excessive use may give the feelings of stifling heat and may deter people from enjoying the garden. Hot coloured items tend to appear closer than they actually are. In small gardens, excessive use of these colours will make the garden feel smaller. In large gardens, use of these colours can encourage people to walk to various areas in the garden as they do not appear to be far away. Plants to use are: Red - Callistemon, Malvaviscus, Aloe, Metrosideros, Hibiscus, Nerium; Yellow – Cassia, Lantana, Thevetia, Tecoma, Spartium, Medicago; Orange – Lantana, Leonotis, Strelitzia reginae, Tecomaria
Cool colours are those like green, blue, white and occasionally pale tones of other colours. In warm seasons, use of these colours will help to cool the garden down to make it more enjoyable. Cool colours tend to recede away from the view of observers. For small gardens these colours should be used to give the impression that the garden is actually larger than what it really is. In large gardens, these colours will help to make the garden even larger. Plants to use are: Green – Plants with silver or variegated creamy foliage such as Convolvulus cneorum, variegated Pittosporum, Ligustrum, variegated ivy, Atriplex, Teucrium; Blue – Echium, Plumbago, Duranta, Teucrium, Thunbergia, Westringia, Vitex; White – Jasmine, Trachelospermum, Lantana, Carissa, Murraya, Rhaphiolepis, Viburnum