Garden ornament ideas
As you can see from the above photo, I like to use ornaments to add color to my garden. I have this thing about deep blue because it really pops in my shady back garden. It's great seeing how other gardeners use ornamentation. Here's a great edging idea from one of my favorite public gardens, Chanticleer, in Wayne, Pa. It's on my list of things I want to try to edge some of my beds. Now all I need is the free bamboo....
It's always fun to discover new plants nestled happily in someone else's gardens. I've discovered some plants at past garden visits that I've purchased for my beds and borders. Several years ago, I spotted this annual, Alternathera 'Red threads' at Longwood Gardens in Kennett Square, Pa. (the burgundy leaved plant). Loved the look and the color so I purchased one this year to use in a container grouping.
Another annual that I saw first at Cornell Plantations, Euphorbia cotinifolia (Tropical Smokebush) was so stunning that I contacted the folks at Cornell asking about where to purchase the plant. They were gracious enough to start some extra cuttings for me and I traded them for a plant I had that they weren't familiar with. Now the cuttings have grown into a lovely shrub that has a reserved spot in our home garden. I overwinter this plant in the basement (where it loses all of it's leaves and looks dead) and then bring it out again in the spring to start it's new growing season. The photo below shows a very large specimen at Longwood Gardens.
I'm an avid container gardener so I'm always looking for new ways to combine plants in containers so they'll make a nice edition to my garden. And I love seeing what other inspired gardeners are doing. I never thought about using my somewhat temperamental indoor Rex Begonias in my outdoor pots until I spied them in someone else's garden looking happy and healthy (photo below left). So I tried using a pink vining Begonia in one of my pots this year and it's doing splendidly (photo below right).