Fiery garden flowers - GazaniaWho can guess what this summer might bring us weather wise? We have had 3 wash-outs in a row now, so this summer I’d suggest you turn up the heat in your garden with a selection of fiery garden plants.

Several years ago, I planted a mixed pack of annual seeds, bought from a budget store. They yielded a great array of colourful flowers, but the mixture was, after a while, a little sickly. Blues, reds, yellows, pinks, oranges and white all fighting for dominants. I looked liked somebody had taken several national flags and stuffed them into a garden shredder! I won’t make that mistake again.

Nothing can beat a well-planned selection of colours in the borders, tubs and baskets. I like to section off my garden and have a ‘warm-border’, containing yellows, oranges and reds. I keep the blues, purples and pinks to a cooler spot. White flowers tend to match anything, and it is also worth selecting plants not only for the colour of the flower, but also the foliage. The deep red leaves of the Heuchera or the pale blues and purples of the Ornamental Cabbage can make as much of a statement as any floral display.

Adding fire to your borders

The following selection of plants will provide heat to your garden display this summer. All you have to do is light the fuse and stand well back!

  • Rudbeckia – Cherry Brandy
  • Zinnia – Axtec Sunset Mixed
  • Gazania – Big Kiss Yellow
  • Begonia – Apricot Shades
  • Nasturtium
  • Silene – Jack Flash
  • Marigold – Zenith Mixed
  • Chrysanthemum – Sunset
  • Aquilegia – Firecracker
  • Meconopsis – Double Mixed – Rare
  • Gaillardia – Arizona Sun
  • Helenium – Sunshine Hybrids
  • Californian Poppy – Sun Shades
  • Kniphofia – Red Hot Poker
  • Canna – Indian Shot
  • Agastache – Apricot Sprite
  • Amaranthus – Joseph’s Coat
  • Antirrhinum – Rembrandt – Snapdragon
  • Aster – Florette Champagne
  • Begonia – Pin up flame
  • Bidens – Golden Eye
  • Calendula – Apricot and Oranges
  • Sunflower – Bicentenary
  • Cornflower – Dairy Maid
  • Knautia Macedonica
  • Lantana – Mixed Hybrids
  • Mina lobata
  • Osteospermum – Tetra Sunshine Mixed
  • Poppy (Papaver) – Meadow Pastels
  • Salvia – Blaze of Fire
  • Mimulus – Mystic Mixed
  • Tropaeolum speciosum – Flame Flower
  • Coreopsis – Presto

Remember – keep it simple. Try and always group your colours – warm, cool, neutral, etc. It is not easy finding good colour matches across the spectrum. Opposite colours will work, but only in moderation and simple arrangements. Good luck!

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