Using Garden Phlox to Add Color to the Garden


Garden phlox come in a variety of colors and are ideal for adding color in most gardens. They range from white and pale shades of pink and purple to bright reds, pinks and purples. Volcano phlox are among the most mildew-tolerant and are more compact than some of the older varieties of phlox.  As a result, they don’t need to be staked and can be used in a variety of settings.  They’re also easy to divide, especially in the early spring and late fall once they’ve completed their bloom cycle. Daylilies are another garden workhorse, adding color for long periods of time, with minimal care and maintenance. Stella-type daylilies are rebloomers and are an option for non-stop color.


Using  Color Schemes in the Garden

color in the garden

Using a simple color wheel while can be helpful as you plan your garden.

There are a number of color schemes that can be used in the garden. Analogous colors are generally 3 colors side-by-side on a 12-part color wheel.  They can be used in any combination to create a monochromatic color scheme.

Complementary colors are those that are directly opposite each other on the color wheel. Using them together creates a soothing yet colorful display.

Neutral colors include ones that can be used without changing the overall effect of your design.  They include silvers, browns, gray and white.


color in the garden

This mixture of Volcano Purple and orange/red daylilies is an example of an analogous color scheme.


using color in the garden

This simple mix of Purple Volcano phlox mixed with rich yellow black-eyed Susans is an example of a complementary color combination.


color in the garden

These 2 varieties of Volcano phlox – new ‘Soft Pink with Dark Eyes’ and ‘Ruby’ work nicely together in an analogous scheme


adding color to the garden

Believe it or not, the color of the cart, ‘Purple’ Volcano phlox and daylilies are only a few steps apart!


color in the garden

The colors in Volcano ‘Ruby’ and the blue spruce are only 3 steps away in the color wheel. Their varying textures also add interest to this garden.



Mildew tolerant phlox

Volcano ‘Pink with Red Eye’, ‘Pink with White Eye’ and ‘Red’ all fall within the same spectrum in the color wheel.


color in the garden

Volcano ‘Purple’ and Tropicanna ‘Gold’ combined as the perfect example of complementary colors.


mildew tolerant phlox

Here’s a great example of complementary colors!


mildew tolerant garden phlox

A few plants – an abundance of color!


White as a neutral color in the garden

Volcano ‘White’ works beautifully in an all-white garden. However, because it’s a neutral color, it pairs nicely with both softer colors and bold colors. Adding white to any garden brings out the other colors.

white in the garden

Volcano White really makes this sunset orange rose “pop” in the landscape.


White in the garden

Orange daylilies and yellow rudbeckia stand out against the pure white Volcano phlox.


Volcano White Phlox

The bright white blossoms of Volcano phlox against the rock and Blue Spruce enhance the total look of this simple corner bed.


SPECIAL NOTE:  Volcano phlox were selected as the Perennial for 2015 in the “Oklahoma Proven” program, a plant promotion program coordinated by faculty in the Department of Horticulture and Landscape Architecture at Oklahoma State University.  They report that “Phlox paniculata Volcano® series is more compact, fragrant, and powdery mildew tolerant than other garden phlox types. Plants develop sturdy stems, 24-28” tall, with deep green leaves and an abundance of large flowers that appear from June to September if plants are cut back after initial bloom. ”


Here’s a short video on how to extend the bloom time on your Volcano phlox, and click here to learn how to get the most out of your Volcano phlox!





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