Plants for Hot and Dark Colours in Containers

Use Coleus to add hot and dark colours.
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In this article, we will be discussing what plants can be used in container displays. Hot hue flowers create some drama in the container garden, where brightly coloured blooms provide striking combinations with golden leaved plants such as Choisya ‘Sundance’ and Sambucus racemosa. The effect is enhanced when dark purple foliage plants or black foliage plants are mixed into the colour scheme.

Use Coleus to add hot and dark colours.
Use Coleus to add hot and dark colours.

You can cool the bright colours if amongst the plants you use some mid-green leaf varieties. Purple foliage matches most colour schemes can be used but with pastel shades of pink or peach to avoid unsightly clashes with gold leaved plants. It is best to use these colours when designing your hot and dark colour container scheme.

Container schemes look dazzling with the sizzling reds, oranges and yellows of the darker shade, will most certainly catch the eye. They will add highlights to more subtle colour schemes. Compact plants such as dahlia and salvia make interesting focal points in container displays.

In this series, you see how the cool colours, pastel colours and hot and dark colour can really make your container gardens scheme, not only look stunning but inspirational to all onlookers.

What follows are plants that can be used in containers to give that hot and dark look:

ABUTILON MEGAPOTAMICUM (Trailing Abutilon)

Abutilon megapotamicum
Abutilon megapotamicum

This evergreen shrub with its dark, heart-shaped leaves that contrasts well with the yellow and red, bell-shaped flowers that appear in summer, Grow this shrub against a wall in a sheltered spot in a large container full of multipurpose compost in full sun. You will need to protect the plant from frosts, so will need to be wrapped in fleece in winter.

ACER PALMATUM Var. DISSECTUM (Japanese Maple)

Acer palmatum
Acer palmatum

This deciduous shrub has dark purple lobed leaves that complement those hot shades well. It has a domed habit where it will grow up to 1.5m in height. Grow it in a large container full of well-drained multipurpose compost in partial shade.

ACHILLEA ‘Moonshine’

Achillea 'Moonshine'
Achillea ‘Moonshine’

This is a short-lived perennial that should be grown in front of a colour-themed container garden. It has yellow flower heads that appear over a long period in summer, which are held on slime stems. The stems are borne above silvery, fern-like leaves, where it will grow up to 60cm in height.

A great alternative is A. ‘Paprika’ that produces masses of tiny, scarlet red flowers that fade as it matures. Combines well with other red blooms and contrasts yellow blooms very well. Grow these perennials in a container full of well-drained multipurpose compost in full sun.

ACTAEA SIMPLEX (Bugbane)

Actaea simplex
Actaea simplex

This 1.2m perennial produces dark purple divided leaves that will act as a foil for yellow and red or other shades, It bears bottle-like white brushes appear in early to mid-autumn with a tinge of purple. Grow this perennial in a container full of moisture-retentive multipurpose compost in partial shade.

ACTINIDIA KOLOMIKTA

Actinidia kolomikta
Actinidia kolomikta

A vigorous, 4m long deciduous climber produces large heart-shaped leaves many of which have silver to pink patches on them Grow this beautiful plant against walls to use as a backdrop to brightly coloured plants in a sheltered spot in a large container full of well-drained multipurpose compost in full sun.

ANEMONE PAVONINA

Anemone pavonina
Anemone pavonina

This 20cm tall bulb produces a dazzling display in early spring with its bright red, pink or purple flowers with dark centres. It will combine well with yellow daffodils and irises. The flower are borne above lobed, heavily dissected, green leaves. Grow this bulb in a container full of well-drained multipurpose compost in full sun.

AQUILEGIA VULGARIS (Granny’s Bonnets)

Aquilegia vulgaris
Aquilegia vulgaris

A few forms of this perennial come in dark shade such as ‘William Guinness’ that has dark purple petals and centres, with an outer white ring. It flowers in late spring to early summer and are produced above fern-like, mid-green leaves.

Grow this 90cm tall perennial in a container full of moisture-retentive multipurpose compost in full sun or partial shade.

BEGONIA SUTHERLANDII

Begonia sutherlandii
Begonia sutherlandii

This perennial that is often treated as an annual, where 80cm long trailing stems of lobed, green leaves and cluster of small, bright orange, star-shaped flowers in summer. Plant tubers in spring in a pot full of well-drained multipurpose compost in full sun or partial shade. The tubers can be lifted in autumn and stored away for planting next year.

BRASSICA OLERACEA (Ornamental Cabbage)

Oriental Cabbage
Oriental Cabbage

This 45cm annual offers a decorative colour leaves that will brighten up any autumn or winter container display. The plant has loose rosettes of plain or frilly-edged white, red or pink cabbage-like leaves grow this plant in a container full of well-drained multipurpose compost in full sun or partial shades, where they combine well with Violas.

CANNA ‘Durban’

Canna
Canna

This large 1.8m tall perennial produces large, paddle-shaped leaves of orange and dark green striped leaves. This makes a spectacular display, especially when the ruffled, orange flowers on tall stems appear in late summer.

It really makes the hot and dark colour scheme come alive. Grow this perennial in a large container full of moisture-retentive multipurpose compost in full sun. Its growing crown will need protection from the cold, so will need to be mulched or moved to a greenhouse or conservatory.

CALENDULA OFFICINALIS (Pot Marigold)

Calendula officinalis
Calendula officinalis

This annual provides oranges and yellow daisy-like flowers for the hot colour scheme, especially in the summer months. Sow seeds in its final position in well-drained multipurpose compost in full sun in spring to flower in summer. The plant will grow up to 60cm in height.

CALLUNA VULGARIS (Heather) ‘Gold Haze’

Calluna vulgaris
Calluna vulgaris

Grow this gold leaved 45cm tall, small shrub in front of a container display in a container full of well-drained ericaceous compost in full sun. The leaves a needle-like and in summer small, white flowers appear.

CAMELIA JAPONICA (Common Camelia)

Camelia japonica
Camelia japonica

This 3m tall, evergreen shrub has glossy, oval leaves that lend a natural backdrop to hot coloured plants all year round. The greens are broken up by red or pink blooms that appear in early spring. Look out for darker red hues to work well with this colour scheme. Grow this shrub in a large container full of well-drained ericaceous compost in partial shade.

CAREX COMANS (New Zealand Sedge)

Carex comans
Carex comans

This 35cm tall perennial forms clumps of green or bronze arching hair-like leaves. The flower head that appears in summer are insignificant and should be removed as soon as they appear. Grow it as a foil for orange and red flowers in containers full of moisture-retentive multipurpose compost where it can cascade over the edge.

An attractive alternative is C. elata (Sedge) which has an evergreen tufts of long, arching golden-yellow leaves. In summer this sedge produces blackish-brown flowering spikes that appear in summer. Grow this perennial in a wet, multipurpose compost in full sun or partial shade.

CELOSIA ARGENTEA ‘Fairy Fountains’

Celosia argentea
Celosia argentea

This 30cm tall perennial that is often sold as part of summer bedding. The plants most certainly will brighten up container displays with its large plume-like, fluffy red, pink and yellow flower heads that lasts all summer long. The flowers are produced over pale green, lanced-shaped leaves when grown in a container full of well-drained multipurpose compost in full sun.

CHAENOMELES x SUPERBA (Japanese Quince)

Chaenomeles
Chaenomeles

In spring cup-shaped, orange-white, pink or red flowers are produced that cover the bare stems before the small, green leaves unfurl, It grows up to 1m in height when grown in a container full of well-drained, multipurpose compost in full sun or partial shade where the plant will brighten up any display.

CORDYLINE AUSTRALIS (Cabbage Palm)

Cordyline australis
Cordyline australis

This 3m tall evergreen, palm-like tree will make a statement in any container garden, with its sword-like leaves that come in shades of green and purple. The plant will need protection from cold weather where it can be brought into the home or into the greenhouse. Grow this tree in a large container full of well-drained, multipurpose compost in full sun.

CROCOSMIA X CROCOSMIIFLORA (Montbretia)

Crocosmia 'Lucifer'
Crocosmia ‘Lucifer’

This 70cm tall, upright perennial has long arching, green, sword-like leaves. In summer, trumpet-shaped yellow flowers appear on tall stems that will enhance any summer hue container scheme.

C. ‘Lucifer’ on the other hand produces vivid red, tubular flowers in late summer. Other varieties have similar style flowers but come in shades of orange or yellow. Grow this perennial in a container full of well-drained multipurpose compost in full sun.

CUPHEA IGNEA (Cigar Flower)

Cuphea ignea
Cuphea ignea

This annual that grows up to 75cm in height has lanced-shaped green leaves where all summer long dark, cigar-like red flowers appear. Grow it in a container full of well-drained multipurpose compost in full sun and partial shade.

DAHLIA

Dahlia make attractive plants in hot colour container displays that produce attractive blooms of many hot shades that are either fully double, semi-double or single. The leaves themselves are quite interesting and can be dark in nature.

Dahlia 'Bishop of Llandaff'
Dahlia ‘Bishop of Llandaff’

Plant the tubers in we containers full of well-drained multipurpose compost in full sun in spring after the frosts have disappeared. After the first frosts of the season, the tubers will need to be lifted and stored on a dry location before replanting once again in spring.

D. ‘Bishop of Llandaff’ produces dark red, semi-double flowers that cover the dark foliage that makes a good foil for the fiery blooms. Grows up to 1m in height.

D. ‘Fire Pit’ on the other hand produces pink and orange, fully double blooms with a dash of yellow at the centre. Grows up to 60cm in height.

D. ‘Yellow Hammer’ produces yellow, single blooms with orange streaks. This contrasts well with the dark foliage produced in this 60cm tall plant.

DICENTRA FORMOSA (Bleeding Hearts)

Dicentra formosa
Dicentra formosa

This plant is useful for colour scheme, you may have noticed that shades can be used for cool schemes, pastel schemes and now hot and dark schemes. This perennial produces pink or red heart-shaped flowers over deeply, grey-green leaves. Goes well with orange-tinted tulips from late spring to early summer when the flowers appear. Grow this 45cm tall perennial in a container full of well-drained multipurpose compost in full sun,

ESCHSCHOLZIA CALIFORNICA (California Poppy)

Eschscholzia californica
Eschscholzia californica

Grow this prolific self-seeding annual in pots full of well-drained multipurpose compost in full sun, where the seeds can be sprinkled on top in spring. This clump-forming annual will reward you with masses of bowl-shaped, yellow, orange and red flowers in summer. It will grow up to 30cm in height.

EUPHORBIA GRIFFITHII

Euphorbia griffithii
Euphorbia griffithii

This perennial will inject colour to container gardens with its dark red stems, copper tinged green leaves and its orange flowers growing on top. Grow this 75cm tall perennial in a moisture retentive multipurpose compost in partial shade. Be careful as the sap it produces when cut is known as a skin irritant.

EURYOPS ACRAEUS (Mountain Euryops)

Euryops acraeus
Euryops acraeus

This small evergreen shrub will brighten any container garden with its yellow, daisy-like flowers that appear in late spring to early summer. They appear over small narrow blue-green leaves. Goes well with tulips when planted in a container full of well-drained multipurpose compost in full sun, where it will grow up to 35cm tall.

FORSYTHIA x INTERMEDIA ‘Lynwood Variety’

Forsythia
Forsythia

This 3m tall shrub deciduous, upright shrub is covered in yellow small, star-shaped flowers orb bare stems that appear in early spring, As the flower disappears the narrow, green leaves appear. Grow this attractive plant in a large container full of well-drained multipurpose compost in full sun or partial shade.

FRITILLARIA IMPERALIS (Crown Imperial)

Frittilaria imperlis
Frittilaria imperlis

This large bulb growing up to 1.5m in height will produce a dazzling display in spring, It forms a crown of blue-green leaves from above which large orange or yellow, bowl-shaped blooms are produced that held on top of sturdy stems. Grow this beauty in a large container full of well-drained multipurpose compost in full sun.

FUCHSIA ‘Genii’

Fuchsia 'Genii'
Fuchsia ‘Genii’

Fuchsias are great as part of the hot and dark colour scheme. The deciduous, bushy shrub of golden-green young leaves soon turn lime green in summer, where a profusion of red and purple blooms appear from summer to autumn.

Grow this shrub in a container full of well-drained multipurpose compost in full sun or partial shade.

GAZANIA (Treasure Flower) ‘Kiss Series’

Gazania
Gazania

This annual will provide you will plenty of hot colours with pinks, golds, bronzes and white blooms with contrasting eyes. The flowers strike a good balance against dark green, narrow leaves and will appear from summer to early autumn. Grow this 30cm tall annual in a shallow container full of well-drained multipurpose compost in full sun.

GEUM COCCINEUM

Geum coccineum
Geum coccineum

This 30cm tall, clump-forming perennial has long, green, serrated leaves. From this clump, tall stems of red or orange blooms with yellow stamens appear in summer, where it will add a vibrant highlight to the colour scheme. Look out for ‘Cooky’ that is an orange flowering geum. Grow it in a container full of moisture-retentive multipurpose compost in full sun.

HAMAMELIS x INTERMEDIA (Witch Hazel)

Hamaelis x intermedia
Hamaelis x intermedia

This large vase-shaped shrub grows up to 4m in height where in the depths of winter lightly scented, spidery, red flowers appear on bare stems. After the blooms finish the green leaves appear. Grow this shrub in a large container full of well-drained, ericaceous compost in full sun or partial shade.

HELIANTHEMUM (Rock Rose) ‘Fire Dragon’

Helianthemum ' Red Dragon'
Helianthemum ‘ Red Dragon’

This 30cm tall, evergreen perennial had soft, grey-green leaves from which a large number of red rounded flowers appear in summer. Grow this perennial in a well-drained multipurpose compost in full sun in a container.

HELENIUM (Sneezeweed) ‘Wyndley’

Helenium
Helenium

This 80cm tall perennial has dark green, lance-shaped leaves, where on top of sprays daisy-like, orangey-brown flowers with brown central disks appear in midsummer to early autumn. Grow this perennial in a container full of well-drained multipurpose compost in full sun, where it will blend in with dahlias and grasses.

HELIANTHUS ANNUUS (Sunflower)

Sunflower
Sunflower

This is a classic annual that is grown for its large, colourful, daisy-like yellow, orange, mahogany, or white flowers that have large dark centres. The leaves are oval green and large but nothing compared to the flowers. Grow this tall or short annual (growing up to 3m in height) in a large container full of well-drained multipurpose compost.

HEMEROCALLIS (Day Lily) ‘All American Chief’

Hemerocallis
Hemerocallis

This 80cm tall perennial has clumps of arching, green, strap-like leaves. From which deep red, trumpet-shaped flower with yellow throats appear in summer, where each bloom lasting a day or two.

Grow it in a container full of well-drained multipurpose compost in full sun.

HEUCHERA

Heuchera are colourful leave evergreen perennials, whose leaves can come in shades of green, purple or orange. The leaves tend to be ruffled and lobed. Grow them in a container full of well-drained multipurpose compost in full sun or partial shade, where it can act as edging plants.

Heuchera 'Amber Waves'
Heuchera ‘Amber Waves’

H. ‘Amber Waves’ has orange-yellow leaves that are pale burgundy underneath. In summer sprays of small pink bell-shaped flowers appear in summer, where it will go well with dark-leaved plants. This variety grows up to 30cm in height.

H. ‘Plum Pudding’ has dark evergreen leaves which will contrast well with hot pinks, yellows or red flowers, Wiry stems of small, insignificant white flowers appear in summer, where it will grow up to 50cnm in height.

HOSTA (Plantain Lily) ‘Fire and Ice’

Hosta 'Fire and Ice'
Hosta ‘Fire and Ice’

This 40cm tall clump-forming perennial has ribbed, heart-shaped, green leaves which have large areas of white markings. It contrasts well with colourful blooms and can be underplanted beneath large shrubs. Grow it in a container full of moisture-retentive multipurpose compost in partial shade.

IPOMOEA BATATAS (Sweet Potato Vine) ‘Blackie’

Ipomoea batatas
Ipomoea batatas

This short 25cm trailing evergreen perennial is often grown as an annual. It has dramatic lobed, ivy-shaped, very dark purple leaves, which blend with reds, oranges and yellows. Grow it as an edging plant in containers full of moisture-retentive multipurpose compost in full sun.

For an alternative Ipomoea coccinea is an attractive option. It is a 3m long exotic, twining annual climber that has green, heart-shaped leaves. In summer small, fragrant tubular, red flowers with yellow throats appear amongst the leave. Grow it up a tripod in a large container of well-drained multipurpose compost in full sun.

LILIUM

Liliums are another attractive bulb that has beautiful colours that are often red, yellow, and orange and fiery. They will most certainly compliment any hot and dark colour scheme. They often produce short or tall flower stems with narrow long, lance-shaped leaves with trumpet-like blooms on top.

Lilium lancifolium
Lilium lancifolium

Grow them in containers full of well-drained multipurpose compost in full sun.

L. ‘Golden Splendor Group’ (Yellow Trumpet Lilium) grows up to 2m with scented golden yellow, trumpet-like flowers that appear in summer.

L. lancifolium has nodding, Turk-cap, pink to red-orange flower that is often spotted black. It prefers to be grown in partial shade.

LONICERA NITIDA (Shrubby Honeysuckle) ‘Baggesen’s Gold’

Lonicera nitida
Lonicera nitida

This 2m tall evergreen shrub will make a great backdrop to fiery reds, yellows and orange flowers. It has arching stems of light green leaves that make an ideal screen. Grow it in a large container full of well drain, multipurpose compost in full sun or partial shade.

LYCHNIS CORONARIA

Lychnis coronaria
Lychnis coronaria

This short-lived perennial has silvery- grey, rosette of leaves, from which small, round, vivid pink flowers appear in summer on tall stems. It is a prolific self-seeding plant but it is best to grow it in a container full of well-drained multipurpose compost in full sun.

MECONOPSIS CAMBRICA (Welsh Poppy)

Meconopsis cambrica
Meconopsis cambrica

If a plant should be grown in a container then this one of those plants, as it self-seeds so readily in the garden. It has heavily divided light green leaves from which light yellow or orange poppy-like blooms appear from late spring to summer. Grow it in any conditions as it is not fussy, but it prefers to grow in well-drained to moisture-retentive multipurpose compost in full sun, partial shade or full shade, where it grows up to 45cm in height.

MONARDA (Bergamot) ‘Cambridge Scarlet’

Monarda
Monarda

This clump-forming, upright perennial has aromatic, dark green, oval leaves. On top of stems, red spidery blooms appear in summer, where it will mingle amongst hot pinks and orange flowers. Grow this 1m tall perennials in a container full of moisture-retentive multipurpose compost in partial shade or full sun.

NARCISSUS ‘Pipit’ (Jonquai Pipit)

Narcissus 'Pipit'
Narcissus ‘Pipit’

This small, 25cm tall perennial bulb has fragrant, lemon-yellow flower that have white-cups that appear from mid to late spring. Plant in large numbers in large container with tulips that flower at the same time. Prefers to be grown in a well-drained, multipurpose compost in full sun or partial shade.

PAEONIA DELAVEYI (TREE POENY)

Paeonia delavayi
Paeonia delavayi

This upright, deciduous shrub has tall, up to 2m tall stems, of large, deeply lobed, dark green leaves that are blue underneath. In late spring dark red, nodding, cup-shaped flowers appear where it can be enjoyed at the back of hot and dark colour themes in the container garden.

A shorter alternative is P. mlokosewitschii (Caucasian Peony) which produces lemon-yellow flower instead and it grows up to 75cm in height.

Grow this perennial in a container full of well-drained multipurpose compost in full sun or partial shade.

PAPAVER ORIENTALE (Oriental Poppy)

Papaver orientale
Papaver orientale

This perennial is grown for it large, bright red poppy-like bloom that have black marks and dark centres that appear in summer. This is followed by decorative seed heads. Grow it in a container full of well-drained multipurpose compost in full sun, where it will reach a height of 90cm.

PENSTEMON DIGITALIS ‘Husker Red’

Penstemon 'Husker Red'
Penstemon ‘Husker Red’

This 75cm tall perennial has dark red, lance-shaped leaves whilst young that turn increasingly green as it matures. The stems are red and will provide a foil for orange and red flowers at the front of container garden schemes. In late spring to midsummer, white-pink, tubular flower appear when grown in a container full of well-drained multipurpose compost in full sun.

PHILADELPHUS CORONARIUS ‘Aureus’

Philadelphus coronarius 'Aureus'
Philadelphus coronarius ‘Aureus’

This 2.5m tall, upright deciduous shrub that has bright yellow leaves whilst young which ages to lime green. In early summer scented, creamy white blooms appear where the plant can act as a backdrop to other brightly coloured flowers.

Grow it in a large container full of well-drained multipurpose compost in full sun or partial shade.

PHYGELIUS x RECTUS (Cape Fuchsia)

Phygelius x rectus
Phygelius x rectus

This is a 1m tall, semi-evergreen, upright subshrub that has long stems of lance-shaped, green leaves and masses of pendent, tubular, yellow or red flowers. Grow this plant in a container full of well-drained multipurpose compost in full sun.

PHYSOCARPUS OPULIFOLIUS

Physocarpus opulifolius
Physocarpus opulifolius

This 3m tall deciduous shrub has green, yellow or purple-red lobed leaves that can be used as a backdrop to other hot and dark colour schemes. In summer blooms of pale pink appear that are followed by brown fruits. ‘Lady in Red’ is the variety to grow.

Grow this shrub in a large container full of well-drained multipurpose compost in full sun or partial shade.

ROSA (Rose)

It comes to no surprise that roses make an appreciated plant for hot and dark coloured hues, as many roses come in shades of red, yellow and orange.

Grow them in containers full of well-drained, enriched multipurpose compost in full sun.

Rose 'Crazy for You'
Rose ‘Crazy for You’

R. ‘Crazy for You’ is a floribunda-type rose that has glossy, green leaves, where from summer to autumn, semi-double, cherry-flecked cream –pink flowers appear that have a light, fruity perfume. It grows up to 1.5m in height.

R. ‘Summer Wine’ is a climbing rose where fragrant, semi-double, vibrant pink flowers that appear over glossy dark green leaves in summer. Grows up to 3m in height.

RUDBECKIA HIRTA

Rudbeckia hirta
Rudbeckia hirta

This short-lived perennial is often grown as an annual, has oval-shaped green leaves from which on top of stems large daisy-like yellow flowers with purple centres appear from summer to early autumn. Grow this 90cm tall perennial in a container full of well-drained multipurpose compost in full sun.

SALVIA SPLENDENS (Scarlet Sage)

Salvia splendens
Salvia splendens

This 25cm tall annual has spear-shaped, dark green leaves. On top of this pink, red, or purple tubular flowers appear on spikes all summer long. To prolong flowering you need to deadhead regularly. Grow this annual in a container full of well-drained multipurpose compost in full sun.

SAMBUCUS RACEMOSA (Red Berried Alder)

Sambuca racemosa
Sambuca racemosa

This 3m tall large deciduous shrub has bronze serrated leaves that turn golden yellow in early summer. This upright shrub produces yellow flowers in spring that is followed by scarlet berries. This is a great shrub at the back of containers where they will enhance hot colours.

Grow this shrub in a large container full of well-drained multipurpose compost in full sun or partial shade.

SEDUM TELEPHIUM ‘Atropurpurem Group’

Sedum telphium
Sedum telphium

This 60cm tall perennial has dark purple stems full of purple fleshy leaves and clusters of pink-white flowers that appear from late summer to autumn. The plants offer a dramatic contrast to hot oranges and yellow blooms and other green-leaved perennials.

Plant them in a container full of well-drained multipurpose compost in full sun.

SOLENOSTEMON SCUTELLARIOIDES (Flame Nettles)

Coleus
Coleus

This is a 45cm tall, extremely pretty, bushy perennial that is often grown as an annual. It has spear-shaped green leaves that have pink, red, green and yellow markings This will give a fiery hue to containers filled with well-drained multipurpose compost in full sun or partial shade.

TAGETES PATULA (French Marigold)

Tagetes patula
Tagetes patula

If we are talking about fiery colours then you cannot go without mentioning marigolds. This familiar annual has deeply divided green leaves that are aromatic when it is crushed. The flowers come in many splashes of yellows, oranges, reds or mahoganies that appear all summer to early autumn. This 30cm tall plant can be bought as plug plant or you can sow seeds inside before planting outside when frosts have passed. Grow it in a container full of well-drained multipurpose compost in full sun.

TROPAEOLUM MAJUS (Nasturtiums) ‘Jewel Series’

Tropaeolum majus
Tropaeolum majus

This familiar, 30cm long, trailing annual has rounded green leaves front which funnel-shaped red, yellow or orange flowers appear from summer to autumn. Grow it in a tall container as an edging plant full of well-drained multipurpose compost.

TROPAEOLUM SPECIOSUM (Flame Creeper)

Tropaeolum speciosum
Tropaeolum speciosum

This twining stem of the 3m long perennial climber had blue-green leaves. On these stems, scarlet star-shaped flower appear in summer, where the flowers are followed by bright blue fruits in autumn when planted in a large container full of moisture-retentive ericaceous compost in full sun or partial shade. It is best to grow up walls, trellises or pergolas.

THUNBERGIA ALATA (Black-eyed Susan)

Thunbergia alata
Thunbergia alata

This is another annual twining climber that has toothed, heart-shaped to oval green leaves from which rounded, flat dark-eyed orange, yellow or peach flowers arise from early summer to early autumn. Grow them in a large container full of multipurpose compost in full sun.

TULIPA (Tulip) ‘Prinses Irene’

Tulipa
Tulipa

This bulb produces bowl-shaped, orange blooms with contrasting purple markings on the outer petals. It flowers in the spring where the blooms create hot and fiery displays with other red or yellow varieties of tulip. Grow it in pots full of well-drained multipurpose compost in fun sun in large groups.

CONCLUSIONS

In this article, we have discussed the plants that can be used to give a hot and dark colours in containers. If this is your thing and you desire hot and dark shades to stir your passions, then this colour scheme is for you.

There are a large number of plant species and varieties that can be used, all of different heights, forms and even leaf colour. Do not forget to use purple leaves, as this can be used to contrast the hot reds, yellows and oranges so well. You can also add height by using climbers at the back of container displays to make them even more attractive to look at.

In this series, I have talked about how colour plays an important part in the container garden. How colours are selected via the colour wheel using monochromatic schemes, adjacent scheme, or contrasting scheme. How the cool scheme, pastel colour schemes or hot and dark colours scheme can be used with great effect in the container garden.

You can now use this information to design your container garden to your own colour preference.

If you have any questions or comments that you wish to be coloured in, please do so in the comment box below.

Happy Colour Plant Chasing.


10 thoughts on “Plants for Hot and Dark Colours in Containers”

  1. Wow, what a great selection of container flowers to create that hot and dark look. A great article thank you with lots of information, I found this very helpful and will definitely enjoy experimenting! Trying new ideas is one of the joys of gardening. Do you have a favourite combination that you have used yourself?

    1. Hi Justin

      Thank you for those kind words.  I think the hot and dark  look will suit any contain display. I person like mixing all the reds with some purple leave plants  to give such a great look.

      Try it yourself.

      Antonio

  2. After going through this long list of plants, I’m confused about which one to even pick because they are all beautiful. The beauty each of them radiates makes me feel like I should get all of them and put them in one container……LoL. 

    Which of them is your favourite? I prefer one which is not so tall, I’ll say like a medium height of irresistible colour. I guess I have to do my comparative analysis to finally arrive at two. Thanks for sharing.

    1. Hi DerrAd

      I personal think that it is better to have a choice and  be spoilt  the  give a some choice. More choice means better designs and that is why a number of plants  have been shown. To be truthfully I love them all. To help with height selection aI always include the growing height, so people will not be surprised at how tall a plant can get, so if you are looking for a 50cm plant you can find it in this list.

      Thanks 

      Antonio 

  3. This is a great post about plants for containers, I am trying to find some good plants for my home office right now so this was a good find.  Going with a hot and dark color scheme seems to be an attractive route to go, I’m just worried about my sunlight levels so that’s leading me towards the Plantain Lily as what I will base it off of. 

  4. Wow, thanks for sharing photos of each of the suggestions because there really is no substitute for seeing the visual look of the plants and flowers. The “moonshine” perennial is really pretty and would work well in my current container. I’d like to use that with some yellow or orange poppy flowers and then add some contrasting darker colors for a nice arrangement.

    Thanks for sharing the color wheel resource and lesson to help with planning!

    1. Hi Aly

      To give a stunning display that will complement  each other in terms of colour  or to contrast them  then you need to know about the colour wheel. Once you are familiar with the colour wheel then you have to know to what plants to have to match in each colour scheme  and hence why this article was written. I hope you like the vibrant colours  and hope you implement it into your garden.

      Thanks

      Antonio 

  5. The lockdown period would be a great time to get started on exterior home appearances and placing good flowers around the house would be putting time to good use.
    I have seen plants in this article I have not seen before but would really love to have around my house to bring out the element of beauty and uniqueness. I have particularly liked the Anemone Pavonina for its bright colours and the Ornamental Cabbage for its uniqueness. I believe if I displayed them with climbers at the back of containers, my displays would be marvellous.
    Thank you, Antonio, for sharing nature’s beauty.

    1. Hi Edgar

      Thank you for visiting my website, as I try to be  informative  as possible and to give people a much information  so that people can make a good choice. It is  better to think about what plant to buy and not regret it than to rush off and  buy the wrong one. I am building up quite a list of growing condition to which a container gardener is exposed to and hope that people can make a better informed decision.

      I wish you all the success.

      Antonio 

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