Containers/Gardens: Distinctly Different Garden

Jennifer Polanz
Over the next several months (how many? We don’t like to commit, really), we’ll be featuring unique ideas for theme gardens and containers. Why? Garden center customers love project ideas, and they’re searching for solutions—whether it’s attracting butterflies and hummingbirds, keeping flowers that deer won’t devour or growing mixed containers that naturally control mosquitoes. They’re also looking for a talking point—something that makes their garden unique.

When I was searching for cool theme gardens, I thought of The Natural Gardener in Austin, Texas. I visited this destination nursery last year and saw the meticulous effort placed on gorgeous themed herb gardens. The medicinal garden, pictured here, is just one of many herb gardens, which also included Provencal, kitchen, lemon and more.

A handout with the features of each plant would go great with a display of them. And if you’re really ambitious, you can schedule some workshops around them, too. So what’s in a medicinal garden? Glad you asked. This one included:
Lamb’s Ear (Stachys byzantina)
Hoja Santa (Piper auritum)
Yarrow (Achillea millefolium)
Aloe vera and A. maculate
Fever Few (Chrysanthemum parthenium)
Soloman’s Seal (Polygonatum biflorum)
Rue (Ruta graveolens)
Comfrey (Symphytum officinale)
Borage (Borago officinalis)
Gotu Kola (Centella asiatica)
Purple Coneflower (Echinacea purpurea)
Sweet Woodruff (Galium odoratum)
Purple Leatherflower (Clematis pitcheri)
Anise Hyssop Agastache x Blue Fortune
I’d love to hear from our wonderful readers what types of unique themed gardens and containers they have for sale in their garden centers. If you’d like to share, email me at jpolanz@ballpublishing.com. Bonus points to the person who has put together a garden based on plants appearing in famous literary works. (I’m currently researching a “Lord of the Rings” themed garden. I’m aware I’m a geek.) GP