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Color wheel

jamesholtjamesholt Posts: 580
I bought the gardners cold wheel.  It shows contrasting colours go well with each other?  Orange and blue?


  • jamesholtjamesholt Posts: 580
    I would also say spending the day gardening is better than the news
  • B3B3 Posts: 27,345
    To me, pretty much anything goes in the garden - apart from pink and yellow. I think the  foliage helps to stop colours from clashing. If I had to choose, would prefer a richer blue with the orange.
    In London. Keen but lazy.
  • PosyPosy Posts: 3,601
    Taste is a tricky subject. One may, of course, aim for a sophisticated palette and impress oneself and the neighbours, but I feel that if YOU like the effect, that ought to be enough. You want just white and green? Fantastic. Prefer pink, yellow, orange and purple? Go for it. It's YOUR garden!
  • FairygirlFairygirl Posts: 54,895
    I personally loathe blue - that colour of it anyway, but if you put orange with purples, it works very well. I think that colour of blue works best with soft yellows/creams. 

    It depends on the look you want though. I have one bed with all hot colours, so there's a bit of 'clashing' going on. The rest of the garden is largely evergreen [vital here to avoid looking at nothing for 6 or 7 months] and that has various accent colours depending on the space. 
    As @Posy says though - your garden your choice. If you like it, go for it. Worst case scenario - you can move 'em  ;)
    With you on pink and yellow @B3. It's the one thing I think Mother Nature got wrong, but as colour is often very welcome after winter, I can let that go in springtime.
    Those horrible pink spireas with other yellow planting in summer though...  :D
    It's a place where beautiful isn't enough of a word....

    I live in west central Scotland - not where that photo is...
  • Silver surferSilver surfer Posts: 4,714
    In the wild there are no rules. No colour wheel there.
    As long as you like the combination of colours , other peoples opinions don't matter.
    Perthshire. SCOTLAND .
  • ObelixxObelixx Posts: 30,021
    A while ago James asked for help organising a bed of flowering shrubs and how to organise the colours so I suggested he get a colour wheel to help him understand colour.   This he has done.

    Personally, I find oranges need other colours of similar strength to complement or contrast so that blue is too pale for my taste. Like @Fairygirl I prefer it with pale yellows, soft pinks and creamy whites.  In my last garden it looked great with the early blooms of geranium machrorhizum Ingewersen's Variety and the new shoots of variegated ground elder.  They were in a bed that didn't get full sun till a few weeks after this and they brightened up that bed no end.

    However, as @Posy says, it's your garden and your taste that matters.  Use the colour wheel as a guide @jamesholt but then follow your own taste.
    Vendée - 20kms from Atlantic coast.
    "We don't stop playing because we grow old; we grow old because we stop playing." - George Bernard Shaw
  • jamesholtjamesholt Posts: 580
    Here is my color wheel it says complementary Color for red-orange is green-blue?
  • ObelixxObelixx Posts: 30,021
    Yes, but that's a very pale, soft blue you have there and just looks namby pamby next to that vibrant orange.  You need a stronger blue such as some of the hardy geraniums will give you like Orion or Brookside which would also give good foliage contrast or one of the deeper blue veronicas which would also give a contrast of flower form..
    Vendée - 20kms from Atlantic coast.
    "We don't stop playing because we grow old; we grow old because we stop playing." - George Bernard Shaw
  • B3B3 Posts: 27,345
    But violet looks good with bluish reds  rather than orange reds
    In London. Keen but lazy.
  • NollieNollie Posts: 7,512
    I agree that blue is too insipid and a stronger blue or purple would look much better with orange. It’s not just about the colour wheel, but the intensity, or saturation, of each colour and even the kind of light you have in your location and at different times of day - colours look very different in gentle, morning sun than they do in the full glare of midday, and different again as the sun sinks and shadows lengthen. Experimenting to find out what combinations you like and what works in your locations is all part of the fun.

    Orange and purple happens to be my favourite combination, the colours bounce off and seem to intensify each other, but it’s not everyone’s cup of tea. Here are some examples from one of my borders, mixed with plum and red tones as well:

    Mountainous Northern Catalunya, Spain. Hot summers, cold winters.
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