Undercover Planting

Little Ray Of Light…

As part of my research into underplantings for my front garden bed, I’ve got back into the habit – when I can – of watching Gardening Australia. One plant that captured my attention in May was a small-height plant called Bergenia. It has lovely round leaves and is easily propogated: so ideal for infill into the Dichondra where I want a bit of height.

While I was searching on the Gardening Australia for Bergenia, I also found Heuchera, another small-height plant with attractive leaves. Heuchera has plum/purple leaves, which fit with my green and purple theme. Although they are a cottage plant, like Bergenia, they looked like they could be adaptable to the front garden bed with its “tropical” theme.

And from Heuchera, I went looking for more plants with Burgundy foliage (all round colour counter-points, not just when flowering) and, thanks to Janna Schreier, I found Ajuga: another cottage plant with attractive leaves that could also work in the front garden bed. This amazing example of her landscape design work shows the richness that can be gained in juxtaposing colour, leaf shape and height:

Janna Schreier: Ajuga, Heuchera and more…

She inspired me to experiment a bit more, one of the reasons I’ve started looking for different ways of achieving the purple-green colour theme, looking at where I can get that contrast in different seasons (where foliage might have to provide the counterpoint instead of flowering) and also started thinking about different leaf shapes in the front garden bed.

I’ve started by planting some Bergenia and a Heuchera Amethyst Mist underneath the Mulberry Tree. The tree loses its leaves in Autumn-Winter, so having colour and leaf shapes below it will provide a point of interest…and will hopefully suppress the clover too.

Bergenia, Paterson’s Iris and Heuchera




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