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Twilight Container Gardens
Do you remember this nursery rhyme? “I see the moon and the moon sees me, God bless the moon, and God bless me.”We used to say it last thing at night at our boarding school – and it was a neat end to a hard school day!
So now - when you get home from a hard busy day at the office or when your evening chores have been done what do you do? Do you sit on your deck or patio? Does your balcony beckon? How about a well-earned cuppa or a glass of your favourite wine or perhaps one of lemonade? If any of the above fit – and for many I am sure they do, then what nicer place to go to than your moon garden? Moon glow becomes you well.
What’s a moon garden? Essentially, it is an evening garden; a cool themed garden that can be enjoyed all through the day as well, but it is in the twilight and night hours that it really comes into its own. The colours, the fragrances, the blossoms and the gentleness of your surrounds are surely a fillip to lagging or tired and even optimistic spirits.
There is so much a person can do with containers in setting up a moon garden, that the thought itself is an easy one to ‘take on board’ as they say in colloquial thinking.
The one thing that stops us though is a question – ‘well what am I going to do with my other containers that are filled with plants that, while beautiful in their own right, do not really fit in with the theme of moon gardening?’ Yes, I can see that this may be a problem – but then that is only a problem if you want to do an immediate switch. An alternative of course is to make small changes and gradually build up your moon garden pots with the plants that you will be replacing or adding.
Giving away, swapping plants or changing positions could also help. And of course, if you are starting a container garden anew, then that’ll be the easiest to execute, as you have the freedom to choose new pots and new plants and new décor bits like lighting. . Slowly slowly catchee monkee!
You’ll want to place your pots in such way that they will reflect the optimum moon glow, so, while planning, watch and note the moon’s path as it passes in the early evenings? Don’t have direct moon glow? No fuss, that soft moon light will offset your blossoms just perfectly anyway – see, moon gardens capitalize on all your chosen bright white and cream-blooming plants and silvery leaves and foliage that they will appear luminous under the glow of the moon.
COLOURS TO CONSIDER
Pots and Plants play an important role here as they need to complement each other. For pots and containers and planters, go for white, black, beige or dark green. Dark blue and maroon would also do good service as will grey or mauve. In many instances you may not have these pots readily to hand, so when buying then go for these colours. If you have bright coloured pots (and I do, I love them!) then use them for ‘spiller plants’ like ivy. These will soon grow over and cover the bright colours of the posts so that they do not spoil the effect you are going for.
When it comes to plants – well there is a plethora of choices as going for night-bloomers, white blossoms, silvery grey and mauve leaves, in fact any kind of variegated plant will do a fine job if it suits your growing conditions and space. There are really many that will give you just the right mix you need for your moon garden.
There are many plants to choose from and while I list some favourites below, you may know of others that you love – so go to it with an eye to colours shape, form and fragrance – and, because you want your container garden to look great all the time, choose some plants that will do double duty as it were – plants that will blossom in the day and night for instance. Plants like Evening Primrose; White Phlox; Gladioli; Roses ( any white ones but for containers for your moon garden go for Iceberg I would say); Impatiens and Petunias will do a good job. Alyssum is also lovely as are Daisies or Fever Few or Star Jasmine … and then there are foliage leaves to choose – go for variegated samples of grasses, ivies and ground covers. Herbs will lend their scents like common sage and lavender; coleus has some fine purple and cream types, and don’t forget the creepers – choose those with pale flowers including pink and mauve (they add some depth to your containers).
Mix and match your plants in size, height, colour, fragrances and requirements – gofor the ‘thrillers’ at the back or centre, ’fillers’ for support and accent and ‘spillers’ for soft lines and gentleness.
MOON GARDEN FEATURES
During the day hardscaping makes its impact just as it does at night so go with your flow as you add interest and décor magic to your space. A pale pink bench or wooden love seat? A small water feature – oh how our senses tune in to this sound! What about some solar lighting along the way to accent your natural art? White pink or soft grey flat pebbles? Music (place a speaker high up and play your favourites)? Who knows … the Faerie folk may visit and both you and your plants will flourish!
Of course Moon Gardens during full moon really come into their own – but then, for different reasons you can say that for any phase of the moon. Even on new moon nights when there is no moonlight at all, your white and ‘silver’ blossoms will do well as they stand out in stark contrast to their darker foliage backgrounds. All will be just beautiful, especially after your eyes have adjusted to the low light. Oh the majesty of this garden is great and certainly well worth a try.
Got the Moon? Got the fragrant flowers? Get ready to smile and r e l a x!
What do you want your container garden to do?
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