Hardscape is an important component of gardening, but sometimes the best landscaping ideas come from your local nursery. Select the plants you use carefully to create a balance of colors, heights, textures and form. By choosing plants that compliment your landscape, you will get the very best out of your property.
Plants in a landscape do not exist as isolated specimens. To look good, your plants need to have harmonious colors that balance well with each other. According to the Landscape Design Site, you can use plants with gray, silver, white or black color as neutral plants for the background. Plants such as black bamboo, sage and lavender create a good background layer that blends with everything. Bright colored plants look good in the foreground. Plants with similar colors blend well together, while plants with colors 90 or 180 degrees apart on a color wheel create contrast.For example, lime contrasts with red or violet and tends to blend with emerald and chartreuse. Experiment with different colors of flowers to create contrasting plant groupings with neutral background plants.
Texture and Form
Pay attention to the texture of the the plants. According to The Landscape Design Site, texture refers to the thickness of the leaf as well as the lightness or darkness of the plant. Use large groups of fine-leaved plants and smaller groupings of thick-leaved plants. Place plants with different leaf shapes and textures near each other to create novelty and contrast. Also consider the form of your landscape plants. Weeping plants such as weeping willows contrast sharply with columnar plants such as thuja or creeping plants such as ivy.
To grow well in your landscape, a plant has to be well adapted to your climate zone, but according to The Landscape Design Site, many nurseries stock plants that won't actually thrive in the local zone. To avoid selecting plants that won't thrive, shop at a nursery that specializes in native plants. Native plants will help preserve the natural look and environment of your own region and will provide food and shelter for local animals. They will also be easier to care for than most exotic plants from outside your area.