What’s in Bloom: Summer Symphony of Purple

//What’s in Bloom: Summer Symphony of Purple

July 1, 2016

By Joan Grabel

Although not a complete list of all plants in bloom, this article will feature a few to look for while in the gardens.

Featured in the Botanical Garden at Museum Hill:

For a SUMMER SYMPHONY OF PURPLE you can use all the plants listed, paying attention to their height and size, and placing in patterns to achieve the style desired.


For a Contemporary look:
Placing plants in a structured mass or in a repetitive minimal pattern will give your garden a contemporary style. The key is to place them in a rectilinear or minimal pattern with an intentional rhythm. For example, placing ‘Munstead’ lavender in a rectilinear pattern with a row of the shorter ‘Violet Cloud’ skullcap in front would be dynamic.

Scientific name: Lavandula angustifolia ‘Munstead’

Lavandula angustifolia 'Munstead' (Photo Cristina Salvador)

Lavandula angustifolia ‘Munstead’ (Photo Cristina Salvador)

Common name: English lavender ‘Munstead’
Habit: 1 to 1.5 feet high, 1 to 1.5 feet wide
Hardiness: Zones 5 to 8

Scientific name: Scutellaria x ‘Violet Cloud’

Scutellaria x 'Violet Cloud' (Photo Joan Grabel)

Scutellaria x ‘Violet Cloud’ (Photo Joan Grabel)

Common name: Violet Cloud skullcap
Habit: 6 in high and 12 in wide
Hardiness: Zones 4-8

For a Country Cottage look:
Selecting 3 to 5 plants and placing together in a repeating pattern along a winding path or in the body of the landscape will give a country style. You can achieve an English garden feel with low water lush plants as seen right now in the Rose & Lavender Walk. The English ‘Munstead’ lavender, ‘Hidcote’ lavender, and the French ‘Grosso’ lavender are blooming and adding a stunning contrast of color and texture to the roses. The ‘Munstead’ is a shorter compact lavender with dark blue-lavender flowers and the ‘Hidcote’ is little taller with light lavender flowers. The ‘Grosso’ is taller, with grey foliage and light blue-lavender flowers. Also the Mojave sage is a stunning addition to the low water lush garden.

Scientific name: Lavandula angustifolia ‘Hidcote’

Lavandula angustifolia ‘Hidcote’ (Photo Cristina Salvador)

Common name: Hidcote lavender
Habit: 1-1.5 ft high and wide
Hardiness: Zones 5-8

Scientific name: Salvia pachyphylla


Mojave sage (Photo by Joan Grabel)

Common name: Mojave sage
Habit: 36 inches tall, 24 inches wide
Hardiness: Zones 5-9

Scientific name: Lavandula × intermedia ‘Grosso’

Lavandula × intermedia 'Grosso' (Photo by Joan Grabel)

Lavandula × intermedia ‘Grosso’ (Photo by Joan Grabel)

Common name: Grosso lavender
Habit: 2-2.5 ft high and wide
Hardiness: Zones 5-8

Geraniums in multiple containers would be impressive. Always best to have at least 2 or more containers with the same plant or arrangement.

Scientific name: Geranium ‘Gerwat’ ROZANNE

Geranium 'Gerwat' ROZANNE (Photo Joan Grabel)

Geranium ‘Gerwat’ ROZANNE (Photo Joan Grabel)

Common name: cranesbill geranium, ROZANNE geranium
Habit: 1 to 1.5 feet tall, 2 to 3 feet wide
Hardiness: Zones 5 to 8
*Tolerates partial shade

Scientific name: Geranium sanguineum ‘New Hampshire Purple’

Geranium sanguineum ‘New Hampshire Purple’ (Photo: Kate Willet)

Geranium sanguineum ‘New Hampshire Purple’ (Photo: Kate Willet)

Common name: cranesbill geranium ‘New Hampshire Purple’
Habit: 4-6 inches in height, can spread 10-12 inches
Hardiness: Zones 3-8

The ART’S SEEDLESS™ desert willow is one of my favorite trees. Flowering now it can be used as a single specimen or planted in mass would be beautiful.

Scientific name: Chilopsis linearis ART’S SEEDLESS ™

ART’S SEEDLESS™ desert willow (Photo Kate Willet)

ART’S SEEDLESS™ desert willow (Photo Kate Willet)

Common name: ART’S SEEDLESS™ desert willow, desert catalpa
Habit: height and width of 20 to 25 feet
Hardiness: Zones 5 -11

Joan Grabel Biography

Joan Grabel is a landscape designer in Santa Fe, NM and Los Angeles, California