Of all the many wonderful colors you can find in foliage, golden leaves are among the most eye-catching. They’re particularly bright and fresh-looking in spring, and many continue to add interest to beds and borders throughout the growing season as well. Golden leaves combine comfortably with pretty much any flower color, too. They’re outstanding with “blurples” (blues and purples)–one of Jerry’s signature color pairings–and crisp-looking with whites and pinks. Golden foliage is also excellent for creating dramatic combinations with black- or burgundy-leaved partners.
The trick to growing gorgeous golden foliage is giving it the right site. Some of these plants produce their best leaf color in full sun; otherwise, they may turn a somewhat sickly-looking yellowish green. A few excellent choices for full sun include perennial ‘Isla Gold’ tansy (Tanacetum vulgare) and shrubby ‘Golden Spirit’ smokebush (Cotinus coggygria), ‘Lemony Lace’ elderberry (Sambucus racemosa), and ‘Mellow Yellow’ spirea (Spiraea thunbergii).
Some other golden plants like plenty of sun, but too much strong sun can lead to a bit of leaf bleaching or browning, particularly if the soil dries out. Two that tend to look best with morning sun but some afternoon shade include ‘Golden Jubilee’ anise hyssop (Agastache foeniculum) and golden mockorange (Philadelphus coronarius ‘Aureus’).
Many gold-leaved plants positively glow in partial to full shade, bringing the impression of dappled sunlight into shaded beds. A few you can see in the gardens here at Linden Hill include ‘Sun King’ aralia (Aralia racemosa), ‘Gold Heart’ bleeding heart (Dicentra spectabilis), ‘All Gold’ Hakone grass (Hakonechloa macra), and ‘Sum and Substance’ hosta.
Jerry is always on the lookout for new golden gems for our customers and landscape clients, and he has some exciting offerings on order for the upcoming growing season. Come to visit and check them out in our nursery and gardens this year; we’ll be open for the season starting on April 1, 2017 when we host our 15th annual Hellebore Festival Weekend. Then, stop in each weekend , Saturday and Sunday, 10 am until 4 pm during our normal retail hours.
We look forward to seeing you!