Friday, July 29, 2011

new series - dark fridays

I am so very excited to start a new series here on our new blog!  Every friday i'm going to talk about the use of dark elements (like plants with deep rich burgundy and black foliage or flowers) in the role of design.  I am placing a quick link on the right side of the blog.  If you want to go directly to this series of posts, just click there!

Anyone who has worked with me knows my penchant for a dark bloom.  There is an air of mystery and sexy in a deep, rich foliage.  No garden is complete for me without these darker elements to create depth, contrast and overall interest.  I'll talk more throughout the series, but for today let me tell you about one of my favorites, Black mondo grass.

photo of Ophiopogon planiscapus 'Nigrescens' with variegated agapanthus by Foundation Design

Black mondo grass gives me the shivers in a really good way.  No foliage is as deep, lush and dark black as this making it a fantastic contrast plant as displayed above.  Black mondo grass also has versatility going for it.  Use it in an asian inspired garden, a modern garden, to line a pathway or even in pots.  Black mondo grass will always, always make a statement!

For use in Southern California and hotter climates, Black mondo grass should be used in the shade or a sheltered area.  It is a great plant for use under a tree or where other grasses (or lawn) won't grow.

Latin Name: Ophiopogon planiscapus 'Nigrescens' 
Common Name: "Black Mondo Grass"

Zones:  5-9, 14-24 (some shade in the hottest climates) for info on climate zones go here 
Water: moderate to regular
Size: tufts to 8" high and 1' wide
Flower: bell-shaped white or purple flushed flowers are 1/4" long
Growth: slow spreading with leaves emerging green and soon darkening to black

Specs from Sunset Western Garden Book

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