In full sun, relatively new varieties of annuals such as white- and purple-flowered Scaevola, “Snow Princess’ Alyssum, “Purple Heart” Setcreasea, “Profusion” Zinnias, and “Wave” or “Super” Petunias offer non-stop flowers with little care. And the tried and true marigolds and annual Salvia remain popular with good reason.

C.L. Fornari

Although there are many more varieties with interesting foliage and flowers, adding color to your Cape or Islands landscape should always start with knowledge of your property’s particular growing conditions. Matching the right plant to the right environmental situation determines whether the plant flowers or the foliage develops and keeps its unique coloring.

The yellow coloring of a “Gold Thread” or “Gold Mop” cypress shrub, for example, will stay green in deep shade. Similarly, many red grasses or shrubs will only turn rosy in full sun. Before you go shopping for fabulous foliage and more flower power for your garden this spring, be sure to have an accurate idea of how much sun or shade can be found on your property in various areas. Also, try to gain an understanding of your special soil conditions (wet, dry, sandy, and so forth). Once you have learned what will thrive and prosper in your unique coastal environment, you can start to add year-round beauty to your garden.

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