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Garden Brights: this season’s trend is bright color

Summer is coming and this year there is an exuberance in the air. Maybe the economy is finally easing up a bit and we’re all feeling a little bubbly about that, or maybe this summer is going to be a hot one and somehow we all sense it. Whatever the reason, there is a definite craving going around…. for color. Lots of it. Bold, bright, in-your-face color. We’re talking only slightly more restrained than the late 80’s neons. These colors are glaring orangey-reds, rich purples, lime greens, and flaming oranges. You’ll see these bright colors everywhere (especially in clothing stores right now).

These colors are begging to come outdoors and cheer up your summertime get-togethers. Here are a few garden finds to brighten up your outdoor living space:

1) Crate and Barrel ‘Alfresco’ line

2) Crate and Barrel ‘Arbor’ lounge set

3) Baur 22″ Oil Jar planter (also available through Potted)

4) Circle Pot by Potted

5) Vitex trifolia purpurea: it’s richly purple leaves make this plant a garden show-stopper. Make sure to put it somewhere where it will have room to grow into it’s full glory. It can be a small tree about 6′ tall.

6) Helichrysum ‘Limelight’: this easy to grow rambling groundcover has soft fuzzy leaves that are a cheerful lime green. It is perfect for your waterwise garden, just make sure to cut it back severely in winter or it can start to look a bit shabby.

Need more evidence? Check out the newly redesigned hotel by the company that brought us the Ace Hotel in Palm Springs: the Saguaro Palm Springs. Let’s just say they didn’t pull their punches….

© Kate Wiseman 2012. In San Diego? Want your own waterwise landscape design? I’d love to help! Please visit for more info.

Sage Outdoor Designs is a San Diego landscape design firm. Kate
Wiseman, the Principal, has been a San Diego landscape designer
for the past ten years. Find out more at