The Q&A Archives: How to combine

Question: Dear Monrovia Team,
I have bought 1 white camelia, 3 nandina domestica, 3 Mahonia, 3 azalea Johanna and 4 astilbe rosa. Please, can you suggest me how can I combine these plants. Some ideas or scheme will be very wellcome. Thank you very much in advance.

Answer: Most attractive landscape designs will have groupings of plants rather than a single type of plant in an area. It also looks appealing if you place the smaller plants in front and graduate the sizes of your plantings. So, given the plants you have, I'd place the camellia, the one with the potential for being the tallest and widest, in the back of the planter. Then place the nandinas together in a group just off-center of the camellia, the mahonias in a group on the other side of the camellia, the azaleas spaced equally in front of them and the astilbes at the very front. The Astilbes will die down during the winter months and pop back up again in the spring. You might want to try arranging and rearranging the plants in the planting site before you unpot them and set them permanently in the ground. This way you're sure of getting just the look you want. You might also consider adding some colorful annuals or perennials in between your shrubs, just for added interest.
Enjoy your new garden!

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