While flowers are so often fleeting, foliage will keep a garden display going for many months. And this is especially true of plants with variegated foliage, splashed yellow, cream or white. It can induce one of those ‘Marmite moments’ – you either love it or hate it – but the choice is so wide that there is surely a variegated plant to suit all tastes and every location. These plants can be used to great effect to illuminate a shady spot, add contrast to an otherwise green backdrop, act as a focal point or provide year-round structural interest. Try one of our ten favourites and you may well be converted.
A striking evergreen shrub with glossy olive-green-and-cream leaves. In late winter to early spring, dark-pink buds open to pale-pink flowers that release a deliciously sweet scent. Plant in a sheltered spot in sun or part shade where its beauty and fragrance will invigorate you on a cold winter’s day. Water well until established, but daphnes dislike waterlogged soils and root disturbance – so choose your location with care. Grows to 1.5 metres.
Cornus controversa ‘Variegata’ is a small tree that’s been given the common name the wedding cake tree because of its tiered branches. This elegant dogwood is often grown as a feature plant in a lawn or border. Ideally, give it a dark backdrop to accentuate its pale structure. In spring it will bears clusters of tiny white flowers followed by small, dark, blue-black berries. Grows to 8m.
The new leaves of this maple have a soft pink flush, turning green with irregular white splashes. It’s pollution-resistant and can be planted in full sun where, amazingly, it won’t scorch. A fast-growing, small tree reaching 10-15m tall, it responds well to pollarding or pruning, which also
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We have the best variegated impatiens plants. Our list includes Spreading Impatiens, Congo Cockatoo, and Center Stage, all with colorful flowers and leaves. Variegated Double Impatiens, Fusion Peach Frost, and Variegated Impatiens have unique leaf patterns. Fiesta Ole Peppermint is great for pots with its big flowers and edged leaves.
If you’re as keen on growing tomatoes as I am you’ll be getting read to sow now. I sow them as early as February to grow inside and late March for plants to go out in the veg patch. Don’t panic if you’re late sowing, they do catch up, you’ll just be picking a little later.
When it comes to sculptural form in the garden, it’s hard to compete with a well-grown agave (Agave spp. and cvs., Zones 7b–11). With sizes ranging from 6-inch rosettes to hulking 12-foot giants, there really is a perfect plant for every garden or container. Most are striking enough in their natural tones of green to blue, but some have raised the bar a bit higher, adding highlights of white and gold to the palette.
This year, TikTok saw no shortage of fresh interior design trends, ranging from pop culture-inspired to just plain innovative. Barbiecore seemed to have led the pack once again, carrying over from its debut in 2022 and spawning a whole new world of pretty-in-pink design styles.
Growing a garden that a florist would be envious of is always the goal when designing a cut-flower display. Zantedeschia (also known as Calla Lilies) should be top of your summer list for this exact reason! These beloved bouquet blooms are a must for any seasonal display, regardless of how new or seasoned you are to gardening.
Planting pepper seeds isn’t difficult and is the best way to enjoy the diverse range of sweet and hot pepper varieties available through seed catalogs. There are several ways you can approach starting pepper seeds. The most common method is to sow the seeds in pots or cell packs filled with a seed-starting mix. The second option is to pre-sprout the seeds using the paper towel method. Both are easy and effective and the first step to growing a bounty of homegrown peppers. This article walks you through each technique and offers tips for success.
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