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What do you think of this combination?

Hello, I'm planning on what to plant for next year. The area is around my vegetable plot. It's a raised board, south facing, but gets some shade as its surrounded by other gardens. I want to attract bees and butterflies and have a cottage feel. I'm going for whites, pale blues and pale pinks, with maybe a stunning dark red/ purple or black plant for contrast and impact. How does the following combination sound? Alliums Aquilegia Verbena Bonariensis Lupins Buddleia A Japanese Maple Feel free to make any suggestion or comments, I'm sure there are loads of plants I haven't even considered due to my limited knowledge of plants. Thanks in advance, Tina


  • Sounds lovely! How about soem Delphiniums for the back or some Canterbury bells?  The bees have been busy on the Canterbury Bells in my garden in the odd few minutes when it is not sheeting with rain!

  • kate1123kate1123 Posts: 2,815

    I like the sound of this. I would underplant with bulbs for early spring interest. Your bees would also appreciate a winter flowering plant like Mahonia.

  • Tina_i_amTina_i_am Posts: 173
    Thank you seaside oldie...I had written down Canterbury Bells, so might include them and the delphiniums.

    Thank you kate1123... Kind of forgot about some sting bulbs and not heard of mahonia. I'll check it out.
  • Tina_i_amTina_i_am Posts: 173
    Sorry should say spring bulbs, not sting bulbs, but that's the auto correct for ya!
  • kate1123kate1123 Posts: 2,815

    Tina I am not sure that Mahonia would fit in with your colour scheme, but you will need to look at something that flowers over winter, what about a viburnum? Do you have room for a winter flowering clematis, they are evergreen and provide shelter for wildlife.

  • <span style="color: #000000; font-family: Arial, Geneva, sans-serif; line-height: 17px;"> I have a lovely ivy leafed winter clematis called Cirrhosa "<strong style="font-weight: normal; color: #000000; font-family: Arial, Geneva, sans-serif; line-height: 17px;">Freckles" that flowers when nothing else is out (in my garden anyway) Is pinky purple so may go with your scheme?

  • lilysillylilysilly Posts: 511

    Tina my garden is also south facing and I share your desired colour scheme. I have had great success with alium christophii and purple sensation planted amongst hardy geraniums Brookside [a lovely blue] and Mavis Simpson [ a sugar pink] they seem to flower for months and simply hum with bees.I  have a lilac tree with clematis Hagley hybred [pinky/lilac] and Warsaw Nike [rich plum] growing through it.I did once try a small acer but the summer heat was too strong for it so I moved it to my front garden where its very happy.

  • sterelitzasterelitza Posts: 109

    I agree with lilysilly about hardy geraniums the lovely blue ones that you can transplant so easily and they will grow anywhere, the bees love them and another favourite is the pink rock roses which increase in size every year.   I have a few hollyhocks which are now growing like mad and need staking, the bees really love these and spend hours going in and out of the large flowers collecting pollen.  For winter how about christmas roses, they also keep coming every year and give out loads of new plantlets which you can plant around everywhere for more interest.

  • My south facing front garden ranges from pink through red, purple and black. I've tried to grow mainly insect-friendly plants. Verbena bonariensis is a must for me. Other top insect attractors in my garden are: Sedum spectabile, Knautia Macedonia, Escallonia, Foxgloves, Alliums - I have several and all attract insects - Lavendar, Monarda, Dahlias, Achilleas, Hemoracillis, Ceanothus. I've also found Oregano/Marjoram is a bistro for bees and hoverflies.

    Sarah Raven has a page on plants for pollinating insects which is useful


  • Tina_i_amTina_i_am Posts: 173
    Thank you, do much, for all your suggestions. I've written them all down and will look them all up.

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