from The Weatherstaff PlantingPlanner – intelligent garden design software
Romantic gardens are more ordered than the haphazard jostling of a cottage garden. The garden will be delightful not just to look at, but also to smell, hear, touch, perhaps even taste.
Plants for a Romantic Garden
There will be roses, of course, and they must have an old-fashioned scent. David Austin’s roses are renowned for their excellent range of colour, combined with the ability to repeat-flower and the fragrance of old garden roses.
Rosa Falstaff is a fragrant shrub rose, with deep crimson petals. It grows to 1.25m high.
The Generous Gardener is a climbing rose, growing to 4.5m. Its pale pink blooms carry a delicious Old Rose fragrance. It has earned the RHS Award of Garden Merit.
Camellias and peonies (or paeonies) are rose lookalikes, with their delicate clusters of multi-layered petals.
Camellia × williamsii ‘Anticipation’ is an upright shrub, with double, deep pink flowers in late winter and early spring.
Most peonies are herbaceous perennials, dying back to ground level in autumn. They flower abundantly in early to mid-summer. Paeonia lactiflora ‘Duchesse de Nemours’ has large, scented, pure white flowers. ‘Bowl of Beauty’ has pink flowers with a cream centre.
There are also woody shrub peonies. The tree peony is China’s national flower and has enormous, breath-taking blooms. Kamada-Fuji is a tree peony with beautiful pale lilac flowers.
Well-behaved shrubs provide structure in garden borders. Choisya (Mexican Orange Blossom) and Philadelphus have fragrance as well as pretty flowers.
Clematis, wisteria and honeysuckle are perfect for clambering over arbours in a romantic garden. Or go for more roses – this time, the climbing or rambling ones.
Include perennials like Geranium Johnson’s Blue, Nepeta, Verbena bonariensis and Campanula ‘Loddon Anna’ for luscious flowers.
And what could be more romantic than the heart shaped Lamprocapnos (also known as Dicentra spectabilis or bleeding heart)?
Swaying grasses are also very tactile, adding to the sensory feel of a romantic garden.
Herbs are perfect for a romantic garden, because they can be touched and smelled, as well as tasted.
Don’t forget spring bulbs for an early display of flowers. A swathe of camassia, grape hyacinths and scilla are fabulous early in the year. Plant up as many pots as you can spare with narcissi and tulips.
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