Saturday, September 20, 2008

The Yellow Garden

Yellow flowers are bright & happy. I remember walking in the heath in the Orkney Islands in early May. Primula vulgaris was blooming along the edges of the paths. Not only did I learn the origin of the primrose path, but it was a cheerful sight in that cold & bleak climate. In my own garden, I am cheered in January by the sulfur blossoms of Euphorbia rigida. I thrill to Narcissus ‘King Alfred’ 4 to 6 weeks later.  Non-gardeners & neophyte gardeners often dislike yellow foliage. When I first saw Dicentra spectabilis ‘Gold Heart’ I thought it looked like celery left in the refrigerator too long. But gold & yellow foliage grow on a gardener. The soft lemony foliage of Chamaecyparis lawsoniana ‘Lutea Nana’ is very pleasing. The brassy gold of Thuja occidentalis ‘Yellow Ribbon’ is outstanding in Winter. A yellow garden might be the happiest place on Earth.  Mix in orange flowers to blend, blue flowers to contrast.

Acer shirasawanum 'Aureum' (Golden Fullmoon Maple): gold foliage

Berberis thunbergii 'Aurea' (Japanese Barberry): yellow foliage
Chamaecyparis lawsoniana ‘Lutea Nana’ (Dwarf Port Orford Cedar) Chamaecyparis obtusa ‘Nana Lutea’ (Dwarf Hinoki Cypress): yellow foliage, evergreen
Choisya ternata 'Sundance' (Mexican Orange): yellow foliage, white flowers, best in part or light shade, evergreen
Hebe ochracea: gold foliage, evergreen
Hypericum 'Hidcote' : yellow flowers
Juniperus chinensis ‘Gold Cone’ (Chinese Juniper): gold new growth, evergreen
Pinus contorta 'Chief Joseph' (Dwarf Lodgepole Pine): yellow foliage, evergreen
Platycladus orientalis 'Aurea Nana' (Oriental Arborvitae): yellow foliage, evergreen
Spiraea japonica ‘Goldmound’ (Japanese Spiraea): gold foliage, pink flowers, Spiraea thunbergii 'Ogon': yellow foliage, white flowers
Sambucus racemosa 'Plumosa Aurea', Sambucus racemosa 'Sutherland Gold' (Red Elderberry): yellow foliage, white flowers, red fruit
Santolina virens (Green Lavender Cotton): yellow flowers, evergreen
Viburnum opulus ‘Aureum’: yellow foliage, white flowers
Weigela florida ‘Rubidor’: yellow foliage, red flowers

Perennials: all with yellow flowers, except as noted

Sedum aizoon: yellow flowers
Sedum ‘Angelina’: yellow foliage & flowers
Hypericum cerastioides: yellow flowers