Gardens are not just for enjoying during daylight hours. A night garden designed with moonlight in mind can enhance your landscape with a beautiful collection of plants and lighting. Let’s explore the key elements to craft your own magical night garden.
Choosing the Right Plants
When selecting plants for a night garden you should create a list of plants that grow well in your area, bloom at night or are white or silver in color to create an effect. The plants chosen ideally would come to life under the moonlight. Opt for flowers that bloom at night, such as fragrant jasmine, white nicotiana, or evening primrose. These plants not only add a touch of elegance but also release captivating scents, enhancing the overall ambiance. Incorporate silver-leaved plants like artemisia or lamb’s ear to reflect moonlight and create a shimmering effect.
To add depth and texture, consider including plants with variegated foliage, such as hostas or caladiums. These will catch and reflect the available light, providing a visually appealing contrast. Don’t forget to add some native night-blooming species to attract moths and other pollinators that thrive in the twilight hours.
Moonflower (Ipomoea alba): As the name suggests, these large, white flowers open in the evening, emitting a sweet fragrance that attracts moths and pollinators.
Night-Blooming Jasmine (Cestrum nocturnum): With its small, tubular, white flowers, night-blooming jasmine releases a rich, sweet scent at night.
Angel’s Trumpet (Brugmansia): With its large, trumpet-shaped flowers that hang downward, angel’s trumpet releases a strong, sweet fragrance in the evening.
Nicotiana (Nicotiana alata): Also known as flowering tobacco, nicotiana produces clusters of fragrant, trumpet-shaped flowers that open in the evening.
Pee Gee Hydrangea: Also known as Hydrangea paniculata ‘Grandiflora’ this white hydrangea has conical blooms from midsummer to fall.
Night Gladiolus: Gladiolus tristis, or the night gladiolus, are pale yellow or a striped dark yellow and green flower that will bloom in the evening with a spicy scent in spring and summer.
Silver Dust (Artemisia schmidtiana): This silver-leaved perennial adds a touch of elegance to the night garden. The silvery foliage reflects moonlight.
Lamb’s Ear (Stachys byzantina): With its soft, fuzzy leaves, lamb’s ear not only adds texture but also reflects light.
Caladiums: These tropical plants with vibrant, heart-shaped leaves bring color and texture to your night garden. The foliage creates contrast in the moonlight.
Four O’Clocks (Mirabilis jalapa): These fragrant flowers open in the late afternoon and continue to bloom into the evening. They come in a variety of colors and are known for their sweet scent.
Datura (Datura spp.): Also known as moonflower, datura produces large, trumpet-shaped flowers that bloom at night.
Note: Some of the above plants are poisonous so be cautious if planting around pets or small children.
Illuminating the Night Garden
Strategically placed lighting transforms your night garden into a beautiful nocturnal retreat. Opt for warm, soft lighting that mimics the moon’s gentle glow. String lights, fairy lights, or solar-powered lanterns draped through trees or along pathways are easy ways to illuminate your garden. Consider incorporating LED lighting.
For a touch of drama, use uplighting to highlight the unique shapes and textures of trees and larger plants. This not only adds visual interest but also creates captivating shadows that dance with the breeze. Pathway lights or low-level ground lighting can guide your way while maintaining the mystical ambiance of the night garden.
Other Additions to a Night Garden
To elevate your night garden experience, consider adding features like a water element. A small pond or fountain not only provides a soothing soundtrack but also reflects light, enhancing the overall luminosity of the space. Lighting can be added to water elements for nighttime enjoyment as well.
Warm Up the Evening
When the evenings get chilly you may consider adding an outdoor heater or fire pit. You can extend your outdoor time in the garden if it’s comfortable for you and your guests. We are experts at designing your fire pit to integrate into other areas of your landscaping so you can enjoy it year round.
Wind chimes or even outdoor speakers can bring a melodic element to your garden, creating a tranquil soundscape that complements the rustling leaves and chirping crickets. Comfortable seating will allow you to stay longer into the evening to enjoy your garden.
We can help you create a night garden for hours of enjoyment once the sun goes down. Contact Us Today for a free consultation!