Today’s post is brought to you by the color PINK! Some people don’t like pink. But I think it is pretty wonderful. Pink is a deeply cheerful, joyful color to me, and who doesn’t need more cheer in their life and garden? There are lots of different kinds of pink as well. Pure pink is just pink, nothing else—sweet, sugary, and wonderful. But often pinks are mixed with a hint of yellow to make a warmer, coral color, or a hint of blue to create a strong, screaming magenta. They all have their place in the garden, but the different types of pink interact differently with other colors. Pinks that are edging toward magenta, in particular, I think, clash with a lot of colors, especially yellows and oranges. To my eye, they look best tempered with purples and blues. But the bottom line when it comes to combining colors is to do what you like best! A screaming magenta and a fiery orange may just make the vigorous, brilliant color combination you are looking for.
Zinnias (Zinnia elegans, annual) come in a wide range of colors, but I particularly love a good pink one. Zinnias are one of the most easygoing plants you can grow. A packet of seeds costs almost nothing, and all they ask is to be sowed where they’ll get plenty of sun in the spring after all chance of frost. Plant a patch of zinnias, and you’ll have armfuls of cut flowers all summer long!
Another classic plant, and one that’s very easy and cheap to grow from seed, is hollyhock (Alcea rosea, Zones 4–8). Again, they come in a wide range of colors, but I love this sweet, sugary pink. Sow the big seeds in late summer, and they’ll bloom abundantly for you the next year.
Think of a tree like a small flowering cherry, but blooming in late winter or earliest spring, with deliciously fragrant flowers, and you get the Japanese apricot (Prunus mume, Zones 6–9). Get some more ideas of using bright colors in your garden here.
Of course, we can’t leave the subject of pink without a rose. This is Rosa ‘Gemini’. It is a hybrid tea rose, which as a group is as famous for being disease prone and fussy as it is for having absolutely perfect, beautiful flowers. ‘Gemini’ is one of the tougher, more disease-resistant hybrid teas. It will get some spots on the leaves, but in my no-spray garden, it still puts out plenty of perfect, fragrant, pink flowers.
Byzantine gladiolus (Gladiolus communis ssp. byzantinus, Zones 5–9) has bright magenta-pink flowers. Unlike the typical garden gladiolus, which come from South Africa, this species is native to Europe and so is more winter hardy and perennial in most of the United States. View some more great pink plants here.
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