Got Pink?

Dwarf Iris 'Lenora Pearl' in A Garden For All by Kathy Diemer

Dwarf Iris ‘Lenora Pearl’ (photo by: Kathy Diemer)

Pink, it’s my new obsession. Pink, it’s not even a question. Pink, it’s the color of passion, ’cause today it just goes with the fashion. Pink, it was love at first sight. Pink, it’s like red but not quite . . . (Aerosmith, 1997)

What would our gardens (or the surrounding landscape) be without pink flowers to lighten the mood?  Some might think that pink is just a washed out version of red, like a Santa suit after too many bleaches, but I find it quite soothing . . .

Heirloom herbaceous peony in A Garden For All by Kathy Diemer

Heirloom herbaceous peony (photo by: Kathy Diemer)

When I painted my living room a mauvy pink, I can’t tell you how many people thought I was crazy . . . until they sat down in the room and truly experienced the calming atmosphere (in fact, pink is used in prisons to minimize aggressive behavior). Pink (a blend of red and white) is often considered a quiet color, however when a little more crimson enters the mix some very un-shy “throw caution to the wind” shades emerge, such as magenta and fuchsia. So, whether you relish a heavenly blush, bodacious bubblegum, or something in between, here is a list of pink hued blossoms that are sure to whet your appetite:

Striped Azalea 'Ribbon Candy' in A Garden For All by Kathy Diemer

Striped Azalea ‘Ribbon Candy’ (photo by: Kathy Diemer)

Azalea viscosum ‘Ribbon Candy’ is a lovely native shrub that blooms late May through June with intensely fragrant flowers striped in shades of succulent pink and cream (hence the name). Native azaleas aren’t used enough in the landscape, so here’s hoping you’ll be inspired to start a trend. Ribbon Candy prefers some shade in zones 4-8, and will grow to 5 feet.


Echinacea 'Southern Belle' in A Garden For All by Kathy Diemer

Echinacea ‘Southern Belle’ (photo by: Kathy Diemer)

Echinacea ‘Southern Belle’ is the belle of the coneflower ball, with flat outstretched petals that surround the fully double, deep magenta cone like a frilly skirt. This is a new selection with extreme vigor and amazing bloom power. Ideal for sunny borders, excellent for cutting and attractive to butterflies. Southern Belle begins blooming in midsummer and continues for months if deadheaded regularly, however leaving some spent flowers on the plant in the fall will provide food for wintering birds. Full sun, grows to 36 inches in zones 5-9.

Eupatorium maculatum & friends in A Garden For All by Kathy Diemer

Eupatorium maculatum & friends (photo by: Kathy Diemer)

Eupatorium maculatum, otherwise known as Joe Pye Weed, is a very tall plant (over 6 feet) that rarely needs staking due to its strong stems (if they grow too tall in spring, I do prune by half). Joe’s muscular stems are almost the same color as the dusty rose-colored flowers, which bloom from July through September. The large flower heads are absolute magnets (and a valuable food source) for dozens of species of butterflies and bees.  Joe Pye Weed is best planted in full sun to very part shade in rich, moist soils, zones 3-7. It will spread, so plant with caution in smaller landscape situations.

Nepeta 'Candy Cat' in A Garden For All by Kathy Diemer

Nepeta ‘Candy Cat’ (photo by: Kathy Diemer)

Nepeta subsessilisCandy Cat’ is a plant with cattitude.  That is to say, you can love it to pieces and it can take-you-or-leave-you, thriving wonderfully just the same. Candy Cat is a low maintenance catmint that grows to around 32 inches tall, with thick stems, bold leaves and profuse violet-pink flowers from May to August, which are ambrosia to local bees.  Nepeta subsessilis also emits a minty scent from its textural green leaves. This Japan native prefers a moist (but well drained) soil in full sun to part shade in zones 4-8.

Phlox Volcano Ruby in A Garden For All by Kathy Diemer

Phlox Volcano Ruby (photo by: Kathy Diemer)

Phlox Volcano ® Ruby makes me think of the song by Dion and the Belmonts Ruby, Ruby, Ruby, will you be mine . . . This fragrant, abundantly flowering, compact phlox was bred for high levels of natural disease tolerance; no more worrying about powdery mildew. But when Ruby’s hot fuchsia blooms erupt from her volcanic stems, you almost don’t care about her disease resistance. An absolute stunner in the border, with deadheading it will rebloom 2 or 3 times from summer through fall. A more compact phlox, the Volcano Series grow to about 26 inches in zones 4-9.

Salvia 'Sensation Deep Rose' in A Garden For All by Kathy Diemer

Salvia ‘Sensation Deep Rose’ (photo by: Kathy Diemer)

Salvia nemorosa ‘Sensation Deep Rose’ may be petite, but her flowers produce a spectacular show in early summer. Topping out at 10-12 inches, this mini stunner is a low maintenance perennial sure to impress with masses of sumptuous lavender-rose flowers from May through July. Compact and clump forming, this is a perfect choice for front of the border and its fragrant leaves resist critters while the “sensational” blooms attract butterflies. Full sun in zones 4-9.

Dwarf Lilac 'Tinkerbelle' in A Garden For All by Kathy Diemer

Dwarf Lilac ‘Tinkerbelle’ (photo by: Kathy Diemer)

Syringa bailbelleTinkerbelle’ is a rounded, upright deciduous shrub which grows 4-6 feet tall, and is adored for its compact shape (perfect in a border) and its wine colored buds that open to sweetly fragrant, pale pink flowers in mid to late spring. Following the full sized lilac’s blossom fest, Tinkerbelle is a wonderful way to extend their treasured scents for several more weeks. Dark green, delicate ovate leaves last through summer in sunny zones 4-7.

Pink is the go-to shade for producing feelings of caring, tenderness, self-worth and acceptance. Pink is the color of universal love. Pink is the sweet cotton candy at the country fair. Pink is fun, so go on out and get yourself some ♥


  1. I agree pink is wonderful love all the pink flowers

Speak Your Mind