Variegation: Plants of Many Colors

In September, Lycoris radiata grew up through Persian Shield for a new look, shown here with Licorice plant.

Next year, I want many more white and green caladiums to plant with Hydrangea ‘Mariesii Varigata.’

‘Bengal Tiger’ cannas mix well with tropicals as well as annuals, shown above with crinum and darker cannas, below with tithonia, bulbine and purple heart.

This post is in response to Gardening Gone Wild’s Plant Pick of the Month, Variegated Foliage. While most of these plants are still untouched by frost, some of these photos are from September and earlier October.



  1. Jacqueline

     /  November 2, 2009

    Simply beautiful, NellJean! I just adore variegated foliage, but of course flowering plants too!

  2. Vickie's Michigan Garden (my backyard)

     /  October 26, 2009

    You have some beautiful plants to look at -the lycoris radiata that grew up in the Persian shield is such a neat look.

  3. Mary Delle

     /  October 26, 2009

    I love the variation of all your foliage plants. Of course, the Persian Shield is one of my favorites.

  4. Racquel

     /  October 26, 2009

    Variegated foliage is my favorite accent for the garden Nell. I love that Persian Shield in the first photo, it just pops out at you! πŸ˜‰

  5. LynnS

     /  October 26, 2009

    The lycoris as a companion plant with the Persian Shield is fabulous!

    Thanks for dropping by. Love your blog!

  6. Gail

     /  October 26, 2009

    I like purple and red together! How delicious that the spider lily and Persian Shield met! I am trying to get more variegation into this garden; but there are very few native plants with variegation. My alternative is to go for bolder leaves!


  7. Amy

     /  October 26, 2009

    I like that licoris! I don't think I have ever seen that before and I like the bloom. You have very pretty combinations!

  8. Catherine@AGardenerinProgress

     /  October 26, 2009

    I love variegated foliage. I don't have a lot of it in my garden yet, but am always on the lookout for it.

  9. Rosey Pollen

     /  October 26, 2009

    Hi Nell,
    Everytime I come to your blog I am pleasantly surprised by your header photo. Amazing!
    I love variegated plants, and I like the combinations you shared. Canna's don't grow so great at our altitude, but I have a variegated Iris that thrives.

  10. joey

     /  October 26, 2009

    Thanks for stopping by … I've certainly enjoyed my visit here, Nell Jean. I love variegated foliage and you've featured some beauties!

  11. gld

     /  October 26, 2009

    I love the broad sweeping views of the garden, but it is with these close-up vignettes that we can really appreciate the beauty of each plant.

    The contrasts between the plants is wonderful.

  12. Liisa

     /  October 26, 2009

    Nell, I am in love with your header photo. πŸ™‚ I think that the variegated leaves can be just as beautiful as the flowers. What a beautiful garden you have.

  13. catmint

     /  October 26, 2009

    Hi Nell, I so love your approach – it's like a partnership with your plants. You provide the setting and then see what they do. They grow and continually give you new looks. And variegated plants lead to even more possible combinations. Cheers, catmint

  14. Hortist

     /  October 26, 2009

    Nell, very nice picture….Variegated plants are my all time favorite………they help me in making different attractive combinations πŸ™‚

  15. Autumn Belle

     /  October 26, 2009

    I like your new header picture very much. This post is full of colourful foliage, it looks very much like a tropical garden. Thank you very much for putting my blog in your blog roll. You make me a very happy person today!

  16. Tatyana@MySecretGarden

     /  October 25, 2009

    The combination of plants on the first picture is very, very lovely! I should get Persian Shield on my list. Thank you Nell Jean!

  17. Deborah at Kilbourne Grove

     /  October 25, 2009

    I love variegated plants as well, sometimes I think too much, I wonder if my garden gets busy. They don't have to flower to bring life to a border.

  18. Town Mouse

     /  October 25, 2009

    Amazing! I have such interesting varigation mostly in my house plants

  19. Kylee from Our Little Acre

     /  October 25, 2009

    I'm a huge fan of variegated foliage and blogged about some of mine a couple of years ago. I like your idea of planting more white caladiums with your variegated hydrangeas. I like the idea of planting white caladiums with non-variegated hydrangeas, too!

  20. azplantlady

     /  October 25, 2009

    I love how beautiful your Persian Shield is as well as the Canna lilies. I took a few photos of some Canna lilies that I saw yesterday. They have such bright colors even though it is fall.

  21. Sue

     /  October 25, 2009

    I like both foliage and blooms. Those begonias sure are pretty. I miss my tithonias now that they died from the freezing temps. Now that I know how tall mine got, I can tell that yours are tall, too. I hope they come back from the seeds next year.

  22. Nola @ the Alamo

     /  October 25, 2009

    What a beautiful show of colors! I love the surprises that nature always gives.

  23. Tom - 7th Street Cottage

     /  October 25, 2009

    I wonder if that's the variegated hydrangea I rooted this year? It's grown a good bit, and will be accompanied by brugs. I'm hoping it grows low rather than huge.

    My hosta do okay. They don't seem to be "huge" by any standards. I'll give them a couple of years and report back to you.

    There's a variegated cleyera at the store I've been dying to get my hands on. It's out of my budget at $14. I never pay more than $10 for a plant. Never. Ever. Maybe just those 12 times. But it's tinged with yellow, and really like the white variegation best.

  24. jeansgarden

     /  October 25, 2009

    What beautiful combinations! Very inspiring. -Jean

  25. NellJean

     /  October 25, 2009

    We all agree, then, variegated plants are the Bomb!

    Grace, one summer Mama decided to make a whole garden of green and white plants, which is how she got Bishop's weed started and rued the day she saw it. I don't think I'll ever regret hydrangeas and caladiums. If hostas thrived here, I'd add H. 'Halcyon' because it picks up the blue-green in the hydrangea leaves. I have it, but it just sits there, sullen because it doesn't get enough winter chill.

  26. Grace Peterson

     /  October 25, 2009

    Hi Nell~~ And the cool thing about variegated foliage, well one of the cool things, is that it doesn't require flowers to look its best. Flowers are a nice bonus but the longevity of foliage is much easier and rewarding to design with. The green and white variegated color echo is quite stunning.

  27. janie

     /  October 25, 2009

    I think variegated plants are my favorites. Much more interesting than plain plants.
    Very pretty pictures, and I am still suffering withdrawal after the death of my Persian shield. I will try again, of course.

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