Some of our staff attended a 'Sketching on Location' workshop held in Pasadena this month. One of the design concepts that was discussed was 'Contrast' which occurs when two related elements are different. The greater the difference the greater the contrast. Contrast adds variety to the total design and creates unity. It is what draws the viewer's eye into the sketch and helps to guide the viewer around the art piece.
This same principle applies to landscape design. Contrast in your garden will also add visual interest. Too much similarity in plant choice, and your garden design can become monotonous or bland. One way of creating contrast is by creating differences in the plant color selections.
Plants that are a deep shade of purple or wine will act as a counterpoint to shades of green in you garden.
Here are a few of the dark beauties that we use:
Smoke Tree Cotinus coggygria
from the office of Torrey Pines Landscape Co. Inc