I love gardening in containers! Anyone who sees my garden knows this to be true as I have them everywhere! I spend the winter months looking at gardening catalogs and magazines searching for new color combinations to try. The ability to change things from year to year makes it fun and we thought that each month we would share some suggestions of cool color combinations that you can try in your containers this year.

The color wheel was first designed by Sir Isaac Newton in 1666 and is a basic tool for combining colors. Analogous colors are found adjacent to each other on the wheel and complementary colors are opposite of one another on the color wheel. Analogous colors are considered to be in harmony with one another while complementary colors are designed to stand out and garner attention.

This month we thought we would discuss combining yellow flowers with plants that have variegated leaves. Variegated leaves have both green and non-green parts. The non-green part is often white although it can take on a yellow shade as well. The unique features of these leafs make variegated plants unique unto themselves but I have found that they can stand out even more when combined with other colors. Yellow is found right next to green on the color wheel which makes them pleasing to the eye.  Adding a complementary color such as red, orange or purple will draw interest to the container and make it stand out.

A simple container gardening recipe is to combine spillers, fillers and thrillers together:

Spillers: They are found at the edge of the container and are designed to cascade toward the ground.

Fillers: They tie the container together as they are planted between the spillers and thrillers. They are taller than the spillers but not as tall as the thrillers would be.

Thrillers: They are the star of the show and are attention getters. They often have dramatic flowers or colorful foliage.

Here are some suggestions for containers that include variegated and yellow flowering plants and will be in partial to full sun conditions:

Spillers: Variegated Vinca, Angelina Sedum

Fillers: Yellow Calibrachoa, Variegated Sage, Yellow Marigold

Thrillers: Canna Pretoria which has variegated leaves with orange flowers, Orange Lantana

Here are some suggestions for containers that include variegated and yellow flowering plants and will be in partial to full shade conditions:

Spillers: Variegated Ivy, Creeping Jenny

Fillers:  Yellow Tuberous Begonia, Hosta which has green and variegated leaf varieties, Spider Plants (Yes, houseplants can be used in containers too!)

Thrillers: Caladium, Coleus

Whether they are in a hanging container or a pot on a patio you can create unique arrangements with this color combination!

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  • Liv2Plant@aol.com Jan 08

    Some good suggestions here. Proper color combinations are important when planning your planters and winter is an excellent time to look ahead and get ideas. Variegated foliage is wonderful to use with just about anything, but looks exceptional well with yellows.

    Thank you for your kind comment. Glad you like our color combination choice. We will have this article each month with new ideas!

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