Have you ever had a color crush? I know I have. Some years it’s using complementary colors on the color wheel, like purple and gold (my high school colors, actually), or purple and orange. Zowie! Complementary color combinations give you action in the garden and create tension. The best kind of tension I think.
Here’s a good example of purple or red leafed cannas with purple and orange daylilies from 2021. See what I mean?
This year’s color crush is harmonious.
I’m having a romance with coral, which is a fabulous shading between pink and orange. I fill my wardrobe with it every chance I get, and I’m using pink and orange throughout the garden. It plays so nicely with my other crushes, too, like red and purple foliage and blue Salvia farinacea flowers.
Here’s one way I incorporated coral in the garden this year. Maybe you’ll make it your color crush too.
Even the fritillary butterflies seem to love ‘Tango Tangerine’ echinaceas. Check out my video above with the Variegated Fritillary. I planted the echinaceas with red pentas and an ‘All the Rage’ rose in a spot where I removed a very rude aromatic aster a few weeks ago. The spring rainfall made the aromatic asters lose their minds. I dug all of them out along with Drummond’s aster. Most of the willow aster in another bed is coming out this winter. It is too hot and buggy to dig it out now.
I’m keeping ‘Bluebird,’ ‘October Skies,’ some heath asters and that’s about it. I just can’t keep up with the others anymore.
Pink and yellow can also do a stand-in for my coral color crush.
My two favorite pink and yellow coleus are ‘Alabama Sunset,’ an oldie, but a goodie, and ‘Glennis’ which starts out one color and becomes more pink as summer heats up.
Pink and yellow daylilies give an impression of coral, and if they have a yellow throat, planting them next to a yellow or orange daylily enhances it.
I bought both of these last summer when we went to the National Daylily Convention in Asheville, NC.
Container plant color crush attractions
Then, there’s ‘Tequila Sunrise’ and Colorblast ‘Double Magenta’ portulacas. They take my breath away each morning when I head out to check to containers and make sure they are fully watered. Drip irrigation spigots can fall out of the pots and cause problems. Also, in over 100° heat, they may need watering twice a day. Don’t forget to fertilize your containers either. All that water runs the nutrients right through them.
Also, don’t forget that several petunias and calibrochoas on the market have this warm pink and orange vibe going. I planted Crazytunia ‘Mayan Sunset’ in a cobalt blue pot with a ‘Hummingbird Falls’ salvia and dark red coleus. It’s been beautiful all spring.
Coral’s softer side
I would say coral’s softer side is a light salmon or apricot, which are also a color crush for me.
Then, there are the intense orange daylilies like ‘Tim Herrington’ that you could grow next to something pink. That would be fetching. I noticed my co-podcaster, Carol Michel, pondered orange flowers this week too. She’s talking about the soft orange ones we started earlier in spring.
I think the whole world has caught my color crush because I see it everywhere, but it could just be because I’m in love. What do you think? What are some of your current color crushes?