When it comes to arranging a flower garden there are only a couple of considerations. One is color and the other is size. There are a number of software programs that allow you to arrange your garden and I have tried one or two of these. They are not to my taste mostly because the time I spend installing and trying to figure out the program I could have been pulling weeds … I prefer getting my hands dirty over sitting in front of a screen any day of the week.
The first thing you need to do is consider color. This is a totally personal thing, but I prefer flowers in shades of the same color so I try to arrange my garden so that the colors are the same or complementary. For instance, I have yellow begonias that bloom more or less all summer. I put yellow and blue pansies in the same garden for ground cover. The pansies are annuals and the begonias have to be dug up and taken inside in the cooler months. So for the perennials, I have white and yellow tulips that come up in a mass in the spring followed quickly by daffodils and then by other yellow flowers that come up in rotation all summer – lilies, potentilla, and daisies.
Arranging this garden is fairly easy. The tall plants are in the center flanked by the lower plants with space for the begonias to be replanted annually. The rim of the bed is filled with pansies.
The choices for colors range from the single color bed (with a splash of white in the case of the one I just described) to a multicolored bed to a bed that comes up in waves of colors. A neighbor has a bed that starts with red tulips then is filled with blue and pink William and Marys (officially known as Pulmonaria and unofficially known as lungwort, Bethlehem sage, Jerusalem sage, Joseph's Mary, and spotted dog).
Once the William and Marys lose their bloom their leaves stay green with nice white spots so they make a nice low greenery look in the garden. Then she has purple irises appear along with bleeding hearts. These are followed by orange tiger lilies. The only thing she plants already are kale (or ornamental cage). She tucks these in under the taller plants and when the bleeding hearts die down and the irises and lilies are ready to be trimmed, there she has her cabbages popping up as if by magic.
The beauty of these kinds of gardens is that they are very low maintenance. You keep weaving them and in the division any that are getting too overwhelming but you do not have to do much in terms of digging and planting and yet the color just keeps on coming all summer.
The size of the plants can provide lovely texture to your garden if they are mixed properly. Mix high and low plants so that they can all be seen and mix thin plants with bushy ones so that the graceful stalks of the thin ones can be seen and the bushy ones have room to expand.