Since annuals are usually already flowering when they’re sold, it’s easy to try them out in the garden centre. Move them around until you get an arrangement you’re pleased with. Highlight the most colourful or spectacular ones by placing them in the centre, or by using more of them. More subtle annuals can play a supporting role, filling in unoccupied space and helping your star plants look better.

A few tips for success

  • Group annuals with the same light needs (sun or shade) and fertilization needs (poor or rich soil).
  • Use every inch of space by including upright plants and weeping plants in your arrangement. Use stakes or arbours if needed.
  • Before planting, think of how they are going to look when they’re full. You’ll probably want the highest plants to be at the centre and/or back of your hanging baskets or planters, with the trailing ones around the edge.
  • Choose colours or shades that prevail in your garden, because if you have too many colours you’ll just create disorder and confusion. Working with a limited palette gives your composition better harmony.
  • When you’re picking flower colours, remember to consider the foliage colour too, as well as the container it will be in and its future environment. Keep in mind that similar shades and gradations of the same colour contribute to a more restful atmosphere, while contrasting colours, in small doses, will make the tints seem to vibrate and create a more playful atmosphere. In large quantities, they’ll create a theatrical effect no one will miss.
  • Use foliage textures and colours to enrich your compositions. Mottled or speckled foliage can resonate with the flower colour;
  • Here’s an original idea: mix vegetables in with your perennials or annuals; Cherry Tomatoes, Swiss Chard, Dill.
  • Plant some annuals among your perennials so that area has flowers throughout the season. For more visual impact, limit the color palette and plant in groups.
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