Wednesday, March 14, 2012

Mass for Maximum Impact

Plant masses are powerful.
While a flower or two would be lost in all this green,
these Mums stop you in your tracks.

Massing, or grouping like plants, helps create
order and emphasis in the landscape.



While the Begonia's above are the same plant,
their alternating colors create an unsettling composition. 
Your eyes can't find a place to rest


The grouping of like colors above, however, 
provides a stable base where
the eye can comfortably rest.



Groupings of 3 or more plants
are pleasing to the eye -
odd numbers are best.

The number of plants you use
depends on the scale of the area to be planted.  
Plants should be spaced so they will 
grow together and "read" as a mass
but have room to spread to their ultimate size.  

Planting too far apart,
or pruning each shrub into a separate ball
detracts from the cohesiveness of a design.



This simple planting,
resting beneath a canopy of trees,
creates a bold impact
even from a distance.




Ground covers make the perfect foil to
highlight a climbing Clematis.
Uniform height helps them read as a mass
in spite of their varied foliage.



Bright color masses,
juxtaposed,
make a dynamic composition.




 I group my flower pots to make a
bigger impact than scattered containers would.
By the end of the summer,
the plants grow together and
create the illusion of a planting bed
on the corner of our deck.

Read here about another important
aspect of landscape design:
Line in the Landscape



8 comments:

HolleyGarden said...

Lovely photos. I need to remember this more often. Those mums are truly stunning.

Flâneur Gardener said...

I keep wanting to plant this - and this - and this - and so on, and I really have to try hard to get some cohesion into my designs. For my new Sunny Border I will do my best to at least make an effort not to plot in single plants at random but try to make at least some sort of groupings, especially of the smaller plants.

Carolyn @ Carolyn's Shade Gardens said...

Excellent landscape design advice---I try (!) to follow it myself.

Indie said...

Very true! Good advice!

Alistair said...

Gorgeous examples, looks like you get good results with perennial plants in containers. I have been very restrictive in trying this, think I will take a chance with some more.

Shyrlene said...

Love the concept - it's a new goal for me in the gardens!

mossandivy said...

I so agree, and it only took me 30 years to truly embrace that fact.
Wonderful Blog, I will be back!
-Susan

GRACE PETERSON said...

Total eye candy. I especially love the grouping of hosta under the tree.

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