Once established, this low-maintenance mix of orange threadleaf coreopsis and dwarf ‘Blue Chip’ butterfly bush needs little water. ‘Rubrum’ purple fountain grass, a perennial in warmer climates, is prized for its rich color and feathery foliage.
Exuberant cottage style
This rambling riot of color has a spilling pink ‘Sweet William’ rose at one end and a dwarf lime-green smokebush at the other, with blue delphinium, blazing star, and pink foxglove in between.
A rhythmic planting of crimson-leafed dwarf Japanese barberry, lavender, and pink-flowering thyme (at bottom) echoes the colors used along the opposite side of the sidewalk, which incorporates purple salvia as well. Such repetition is an easy way to unify the two gardens.
Tough red potentilla shares this strip with drought-tolerant ‘Purple Heart’ wandering Jew and blue-green succulents. Good choices next to busy parking spots, these plants top out at about a foot high, staying clear of swinging car doors.