Plants - Perennials

Frame your garden with fabulous phlox

Anne Marie Van Nest

These quintessential cottage garden plants help form the foundations of the garden

Five ways to grow phlox
Highlight rambling types, including Phlox subulata cultivars, at the front of borders by combining them with short plants that have maroon or grey foliage, such as sedums and Artemisia stelleriana ‘Silver Brocade’. In shady gardens, P. divaricata goes well with maroon-leafed heucheras.

phlox-inset.jpgCamouflage leaves affected by powdery mildew by planting hostas and the taller cranesbill geraniums, for example, in front of them.

For a spectacular show, mass tall types in generous clumps, allowing lots of space between plants for good air circulation.

For a loose, natural effect, combine paniculata types with ornamental grasses or native plants such as Joe Pye weed or fireweed.

Juxtapose these old-fashioned but diverse plants with modern materials such as galvanized steel, cut limestone, prefab concrete walls or paving for an eclectic, edgy look. —Albert Mondor, Les Jardins d’Albert Inc., Montreal

Perfect phlox partners
Bold, showy perennials go shoulder to shoulder with phlox:

  • Ruby Star coneflower (Echinacea purpurea ‘Rubinstern’) Zone 3
  • ‘Autumn blush’ coreopsis (Coreopsis ‘Autumn Blush’) Zone 4
  • ‘Summer’s Kiss’ blanketflower (Gaillardia x grandiflora ‘Summer’s Kiss’) Zone 3

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