The Q&A Archives: The right mix of plants for my flower garden?

Question: I would like a professional opinion about my new flower garden choices. Rows of flowers listed from front to back (east exposure in front of condo:
*Dusty Miller for a border (do I have to use annual for under 2ft on the dusty miller?)
*Red false spirea/Astilbe
*White snow drift false spirea
*purple Salvia lubeca or russian sage
This area has a 7 ft bush in the rear against the building, the flowers would be half circle rows starting with purple. Any suggestions? Do these sound like plants that will compliment each other?

Thank You,

Answer: I like your choices and I think the foliage and flower colors will complement each other. Dusty miller tends to get woody after a few years in the garden, but it is easy to prune back to keep it small. Russian sage can grow upwards of 5 feet tall and wide so you'll definitely want to prune it back each spring, or plant the Salvia instead. If, after your plants have been in the garden for a year or two, you may want to fill in bare spots with colorful annuals. So many have specific bloom seasons that you can change out the annuals in spring, summer and fall for a new look with each season. For example, Alyssum, Snapdragons, Lobelia and Impatiens can provide spring color; Lantana, Marigolds and Zinnias can provide brilliant summer color; chrysantheum, African daisies and calendula can make the garden sing in the autumn.

Enjoy your beautiful garden!

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