Weekly photo challenge: Harmony

Harmony occurs when smaller parts come together to form a pleasing and consistent whole i.e.  when there is order to the components that the brain enjoys. This often refers to sounds in the form of music or colours in the form of patterns.

Harmony is something very important when you are creating a garden.  You look for harmony not only of the plant colours, but of the shapes and forms of the plants too.

Phormium and salvia still looking good

Shapes and forms of plants are as important as colours, especially in the winter months.

There are different ways to choose plant colours; some people like vibrant colour combinations, whereas others go for more restful plant colours.

A vibrant colour combination of Busy Lizzies and Petunias

A vibrant colour combination of Busy Lizzies and Petunias

A harmonious colour combination of blue lobelia and silver.

A restful colour combination of blue lobelia and silver foliage.

The colour wheel can be useful when thinking about harmony of plant colours. Colours next to each other are more calm whereas those opposite each other are more vibrant.

RBG color wheel.svg
By DanPMK at English Wikipedia, CC BY-SA 3.0, https://commons.wikimedia.org/w/index.php?curid=13427725

iris reticulata close up

Iris reticulata ‘Harmony’

This plant is a purple blue colour with wonderful but small splashes of yellow and white. Purple and yellow are opposite each other and so this produces a vibrant colour combination.

Yellow and blue/purple is a combination I particularly like in my own garden.

Geranium and Erysimum

Geranium and Erysimum

There is a lot of theory written about how you can combine colours from the colour wheel, but often it depends on the shade of the colour and whether there is a third or forth colour involved.  To add to the confusion plant colours are not always the same as those on the label and certainly they don’t always reproduce well on a computer monitor!

So at the end of the day you have to try it and see, keep what you like and change what you don’t!

Here are some more combinations that I have enjoyed. I hope you find them harmonious too.

Top Border

Top Border in late summer

Scabiosa Mariposa Blue contrasts with Cotinus leaves

Scabiosa Mariposa Blue contrasts with Cotinus leaves

Phormium and Erysimum

Phormium and Erysimum

Do you have any favourite colour combinations for your garden?




20 thoughts on “Weekly photo challenge: Harmony

  1. Lovely blog post for this challenge Annette, there are so many shades and tones of colour. Plus forms and textures to play about with, that I haven’t a favourite but I like the endless possibilities, the budget to go with that idea though is another matter!

    • Thanks Julie. Yes gardening can be expensive. I started to say at the beginning, but I don’t think buying ever stops unless you are very disciplined like a few of my blogging friends.

  2. A great post Annette. Harmony is exactly what we all try to achieve in the garden. Unless we are Christopher Lloyd and aim to shock with clashing colours. My theory is that he was colour blind.

    • Can’t claim they were all my ideas, but I hope to copy the blue lobelia and silver foliage this year in my garden. I am not good at using books either. I just like to move stuff until it looks good.

  3. What a vibrant post! Yes, I love the complementary colours together – yellow marigolds and heliotrope, for example. It is lovely to see buds and the first signs of greenery.

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