How do I feel about red? Well, actually I love it! I know a lot of gardeners that won't have it in their garden - too garish, too bright, not pastel! I've heard so much talk about pastel gardens that I tried to add a pastel area to my garden.
And what is in my pastel garden? Well, some pastels, of course. Whites, creams, pinks, blues:
But, look closely - what do you see in the background?
Red sage. That was all that was on the plant tag when I purchased this plant. It wasn't special. It had no fancy name to it. It was red. It was a sage. Red sage. That was it.
I bought it on a whim, and when I got it home, I had second thoughts. This was surely a big mistake! In the thrill and excitement of buying an unplanned purchase, I had forgotten - this was supposed to be a pastel garden! Oops! Who has ever heard of adding red to a pastel garden? I was deflated, but I planted it anyway. What else could I do?
Who would have thought that a plant so common, so non-pastel could look so wonderful here? This little plant, labeled so simply, and purchased so thoughtlessly, really is special. The butterflies love it. It blooms with profusion. It has spread to fill in this area nicely. It brings the butterflies joy, but even more importantly, it brings me joy. It is a lovely addition, even to my pastel garden.
Now I can't imagine this bed without that touch of red. It brings a touch of contrast, but doesn't clash - perhaps because I have so much red in all the rest of my garden areas. Or perhaps because of our harsh sun. Maybe it's just the right shade of red. Whatever the reason, this little bit of red looks natural and beautiful to me, even here.
This is probably some form of Salvia greggii, also known as Autumn Sage, a perennial in zones 7 through 9. It grows to around 2 ft tall and wide, and loves full sun. It also comes in a wide variety of colors.
But I love it in red. Even where it's not supposed to be!
Do you have a pastel garden? Do you have red in it?