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Foilage border can give you texture and color.

A great foliage border gives a garden a rich, layered look that doesn’t depend on flowers for dramatic effect. The key to success: Pick the right blend of shrubs and small trees whose leaves and branches create contrasts in color, texture, shape, and size. To make each plant stand out, set big-leafed plants beside fine-leafed ones, and spice up a mostly green palette with variegated plants that provide hits of gold, bronze, and purple.

This moisture-loving shade border hits all those notes — plus it looks good even in winter, when the woody stems of deciduous elements combine with evergreens to give it structure. Plants, arranged low to tall, grow up an incline, adding extra depth and drama.


Guide: Foliage border; Apr'13; border at home garden of Stacie Crooks

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