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Happy Accidents


By AndrewR


Many of us often plan where to put the plants in our garden, but sometimes nature knows best, and we get something we hadn’t bargained for. The results can be surprising and inspiring. Here are some accidental combinations in my own garden just now.

Dicentra spectabilis ‘Valentine’ is a fairly new variety, with red flowers rather than the more usual deep pink. A white polyanthus appeared in front of it.

The young foliage of spiraea ‘Goldflame’ contains yellow and orange hues. Tulipa whittallii in the background is darker, but combines the same colours.

This is heuchera ‘Circus’. The brown grass is an uncinia, which self-sows in my garden. I think they go together well.

And the flowers of epimedium x warleyense pick up the young foliage on the acer further along the border.

Sometimes, there is an unexpected view in the garden. A gap between two shrubs gives a glimpse of these tulips.

This time, dicentra spectabilis, in its white-flowered form, is the unplanned arrival. I would never have thought of putting it in front of a camellia, but they both enjoy the same conditions, so why not?

I had some pansies in this trough last summer. Theses seedlings came up this spring.

While Spanish bluebells obviously like growing through rhododendron ‘Princess Anne’.

Finally, a happy accident with the light. The far end of this vista always used to be in shade. When I was able to buy a piece of next door’s garden, and take down the fence, light flooded in at the end of the day.

What happy plant accidents have you got?

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Lovely combinations Andrew :-)
I had a potentilla Monarchs Velvet seed near a daylily with an eye that perfectly matched its colour, and some dark blue grape hyacinths that have seeded under a purple leaved berberis they look pretty good together :-)

17 Apr, 2014


How nice to find all those unexpected plants,Andrew..My Uncinia Rubra seeded itself in a Golden Sedge grass,so I have a lovely two tone effect ..:o)

17 Apr, 2014


My happy accident was finding GoY in 2008 ..

.. when I needed an answer to a gardening question ..

and someone called Andrewr was the first to reply.... ;o)

17 Apr, 2014


I think they call a happy accident 'serendipity', don't they, Andrew? You certainly have some lovely combinations there and I love the light flooding in in your last picture; light at the end of the tunnel, as Spring after Winter.

17 Apr, 2014


Yes that last picture is beautiful. I haven't got many happy accidents but I do have what appears to be a pretty and dainty cross between a polyanthus and a wild primrose (I don't have any polyanthus though) which has put itself in a dark and fairly cheerless place.

17 Apr, 2014


The happiest accident in my garden is my neighbours beautiful blue hibiscus . She is too old to garden now so it never gets pruned, water or fed. Yet every year it appears over my fence giving something lovely to look at.

18 Apr, 2014


My mother used to say that plant colours never clash.
I sometimes think of that when I see a lady wearing
garments that are not happy accidents !

20 Apr, 2014

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