How to Create Great Plant Combinations

comboMost plants possess great beauty on their own but when partnered with another the effect is more than doubled!

Over the years I have seen many inspired plant combinations. Many of them have been in gardens designed by famous landscape architects, National Trust and Royal Horticultural Society gardens, gardens of gifted private gardeners and occasionally in our own garden!

Well, in our own garden a lot of that is down to being married to a florist because, when it comes to colours, Felicity certainly knows what works together and when it comes to growing conditions and techniques that’s where I come in!
You see, like lots of things, team work pays off.

It may be that the twinning was planned or perhaps it was purely by accident.

Some of the best examples in our garden happened purely by chance! Take the blue ‘love in the mist’ [Nigella] that seeded itself amongst the golden marjoram, (Pictured Top Right) this was pure accident.

The whole effect is as soft focus as the filming of any Nigella Lawson TV show!

Others, such as the under-planting of Ballerina rose with Geranium x magnificum, (Right) were carefully planned.

combo2Vegetable growers shouldn’t feel left out of this for great combinations can be achieved with a bit of thought and still there is something to put on the plate at the end of it! The twinning of rhubarb chard with artichoke (pictured Left) caught my eye on a visit to Levens Hall gardens a while ago and, on a smaller scale, coloured cut-and-come-again lettuce and some of the kales like the gorgeously dark leaf Nero de Toscana would not only look stunning but be highly productive over many weeks too!


combo3Well, some of the good companions that I have seen are captured on film and a few examples are on this website and are there to inspire others to copy. However, I’m sure that we all have great examples of plant combinations that we would like to share with others. (picture left shows Purple Berberis, Cornus alba Spaethii, Sambucus nigra purpurea).


combo4I am looking for your good combinations so that we can all share them. Just take a high resolution digital image of a plant combination that you think should be shared with others and we will post the best here on our website.

Send your very best images to and we will get them posted on this page.

If you know what the plants and varieties in your images are, so much the better. This will make it easier for others to replicate. (Picture right shows Eryngium yuccifolium and Agastache Blue Fortune).

(Below Echinacea, white & purple, Eryngium, Perovskia and Moilinia).




(Below Geranium magnificum, Rose Penelope, Nepeta (Catmint) and Campanulas).




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