Friday, April 14, 2006

Online Obsession - Gothic Gardens

This week I've worn out my Google search bar scouring the web for black plants. I know it's not the first color that pops in to your mind when you picture a spring garden, but I was inspired by the lux leaves of the black elephant ears at Northaven Gardens and the images in Karen Platt's Black Magic and Purple Passion.

The best online resource for black plants is, which has a great list of black plants of all types. Here are some suggestions for what works in Texas:

  • Hollyhock - the Watchman (bi-annual): 6'-8' tall green stalks with large black flowers
  • Ornamental Sweet Potato Vine - Black Heart: dark purple foliage with lavender blooms
  • Coleus: an 18"-36" shade plant with varieties that range in color from lime green to black
  • Purple Fountain Grass: an 18" - 24" ornamental grass


  • Oxalis - Purple Heart: a shade-loving, large-leafed shamrock in deep purple
  • Purple Heart Spiderwort: royal purple foliage with lilac-colored flowers
  • Elephant Ears - Black Magic: deep black leaves, keeps its dark color best when in the sun
  • Chinese Fringe Flower: a dark-leafed shrub with pink flowers that look like bits of fringe
  • Black Knight Canna: 4'-6' dark green foliage with stalks of velvety red flowers
  • Calla Lily - Black Pearl: Green and white foliage with red-rimmed black flowers
  • Japanese Maple: color varies, but many varieties have deep purple leaves
  • Smoketree - Royal Purple: 10' - 15' ornamental tree with deep Burgundy foliage


Rothko said...

Nice job. Looks great!

Anonymous said...

damn i'm so excited to have a new destination on weekends. i really like this place. wonder if you've looked at txsmartscape lately? always a big fan...