Planning a Moon Garden

I’m paging through a seed catalog while admiring the blanket of snow outside my bay window. We crave this quiet during our daily hustle and bustle. Today’s snowfall reminds me that the color white creates solitude.

To establish such a sanctuary in the spring, I’m planning a Moon Garden. It will feature white flowers that glimmer in moonlight with a supporting cast of soft silvers, purples, and blues. My friend Michael lent me the book The Twilight Garden: Creating a Garden that Entrances by Day and Comes Alive at Night, by Lia Leendertz. As she writes, a garden is “a place of refuge.” Frantically planting vegetable seedlings and perennials last year, I rarely sat back to enjoy my creation. Michael encourages me to set up seating areas. Mine is tucked away in the shade. So the plants in my moon garden need to tolerate (or love) shade. Two white hydrangea bushes already set the scene. Last year, a friend was eager to get rid of the “invasive” ground-cover Lamium, which I planted among young hostas and ferns.

Humidity enhances scents dangling in the summer breeze. Jasmine will climb the fence behind the bench where my husband and I unwind after work. Cloaked by a hedge of lavender, we’ll enjoy privacy outdoors and host small parties.

Here’s what else is on my list:

  • Moonflower (Ipomoea alba) is an annual that opens at night.
  • Queen of the Night (Epiphyllum spp.) is a perennial that flowers nocturnally. Each flower lasts for one night only!
  • 4’o clocks (Mirabilis jalapa) open between 4 p.m. and 8 p.m.
  • Siberian Bugloss (Brunnera) is a shade-lover that could fill out the hostas, standing out with their frosty leaves and false forget-me-not flowers.
  • Silver ferns (Cyathea dealbata) are other shade-lovers that I’ll plant between the existing green ferns.
  • False Spirea (Astilbe chinensis) looks like a good leafy filler.
  • Columbine (Aquilegia ‘Blue Jay’ or a solid white) might be too bold for my taste. I prefer delicate flowers.
  • Lamb’s Ears, Candytuft, Forget-Me-Not, and White Dianthus with silver foliage are other options for groundcover.

Fellow gardeners: Have you planted any of these? Which shade-tolerant white and silver plants would you recommend? What advice do you have about moon gardening?

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7 thoughts on “Planning a Moon Garden

  1. Jasmine, the flower of my childhood in Iran, sitting by my grandmother’s samavar sipping tea, while a saucer holding a handful of her Jasmine flowers daily, displayed unassumingly by her side. I thought you might like to see this page, when I look at the pics. of jasmine, it brings back much childhood memories, and its sweet aroma fills my soul ❤ Highly recommending you planting it in your future moon garden! http://www.mypersiankitchen.com/jasmine-syrup/

    Liked by 1 person

  2. Lovely sentiment, Sienna. Having lived in Taiwan for a few years, Jasmine is ubiquitous. I have memories of a similar plant, Honeysuckle, that grew near my childhood home. It grew wild at an old cemetery dating to the seventeen-hundreds. On warm summer days, its perfume semaphored the cemetery’s boundary, evoking a chill. Whenever I smell it, it brings me back to the remote, tree’d road we lived on. Thanks for sharing.

    Liked by 1 person

  3. Hi, Sienna!  A friend and I are taking a workshop at Point Philip Perrenials next week.   Maybe you could make something to fit your moon garden theme?  I forwarded the info to you.

    Sent from my Verizon, Samsung Galaxy smartphone

    Like

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