I originally had visions of a traditional cottage garden surrounding the house with classics like roses, iris, and lilacs. When I figured out that the side of the house that we'll drive up to is in partial shade I was a little crushed, but there are so many great shade plants out there and I'm THRILLED with what I picked out!
Actually I'm pretty excited to have been able to afford the plants for a whole flower bed - I definitely put getting the fruit, nut, and vegetables before flowers. I was shopping around online and Michigan Bulb had some AMAZING prices, and I was able to go ahead and order everything I wanted! Hopefully the quality is good. I'll report back once the plants arrive around March.
In the pictures below, you may notice a color theme. Yes, there are a lot of blue flowers.
I'm not sure how well that will look with a blue house, but these were the flowers I really liked! I just couldn't help myself. I also got plenty of foliage plants (hostas and ferns) and white and pink flowers to break up the wall o' blue. Different things will be flowering at different times, and hopefully that will also help things to look more balanced.
Smaller plants for the front of the flower bed:
White Delight Carpet Phlox - "This carefree wonder quickly blankets even tough problem areas with dense evergreen foliage and thousands of colorful blooms."
Blue Zebra® Primrose - "Very striking eye-catcher in a unique blue tint! Striped light blue and white flowers with a contrasting bright yellow heart are extraordinarily long flowering! Upright habit that is perfect for small mixed or stand alone containers."
Lily-of-the-Valley - "Tiny, sweet-smelling, bell-shaped flowers cover this old-fashioned favorite every spring."
Butterfly Blue Scabiosa - "This compact perennial blooms from spring through fall, producing blue double-flowering pompons of color. Perfect for the front of the border, rock gardens and patio containers."
Medium-height plants for the middle of the flower bed:
Blue Fusion Hardy Geranium - "Hardy geraniums are low-maintenance perennials ideal for borders, rock gardens or as a colorful ground cover."
Virginia Bluebells - "Native to North America, this perennial plant is one of the prettiest wildflowers. Clusters of small, trumpet-shaped flowers nodding from a single sturdy stem look stunning in any garden location."
Hosta Mix Super Bag - "An assortment of popular varieties, our low-cost mix provides plenty of texture and color, yet needs little care. Mildly fragrant purple or white trumpet-shaped flowers are carried on graceful panicles that rise above the attractive foliage."
Blue Columbine - "Use as a border, in a rock garden, as a cut flower or anywhere you need a splash of color. Blue Columbine is hardy, versatile and lovely."
Super Aster - "The electric blue petals and bright yellow eyes of Super Aster spring into bloom just when all the other flowers in your garden start to fade. The striking color combination is sure to add sparkle to any border."
Blue Orchid Toad Lily - "Gorgeous lavender-blue blooms with light blue and reddish spots stand out in borders."
Cappuccino Astilbe - "A stunning contrast in color, Cappuccino features large feathery plumes of snowy white atop deep, rich bronze-green foliage that is very attractive with a lacy look that intensifies when paired with the blooms. Light and airy, the flowers are tall with an attention-grabbing form – perfect for adding interest to shady areas of the garden. Blooms appear in midseason and last for weeks."
Shasta Daisy - "No garden should be without this classic flower! This long-lived perennial requires little care and delivers masses of frilly, double blooms with yellow centers. Butterflies love them!"
Sweet Vanilla Butterfly Flower - "Its sweet vanilla smell draws butterflies and hummingbirds, but this is one tough, versatile plant. Suitable for moist soil, such as next to a lake, but also tolerant of dry conditions. Excellent for everything from large landscape projects to naturalizing to cut-flower arrangements."
Taller hedges for the back of the flower bed:
Hills of Snow Hydrangea - "Large clusters of small white blooms appear in midsummer and gently fade to a wonderful shade of green. Hills of Snow blooms without fail each season to create a bold statement for the landscape."
Josee Reblooming Lilac Hedge - "Enjoy the spring fragrance of lilacs all summer long with this dwarf reblooming lilac. Lavender-pink blooms stand out against the petite, green, heart-shaped leaves. This low-maintenance, super-hardy variety is perfect for creating a privacy fence or hedge."
Double Mock Orange - "A wonderful, orange-blossom-like fragrance makes this showy white-flowered shrub very popular. Vigorous and easy to grow, it's great for foundation plantings or shrub borders."