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One thing she stressed was having something of interest year around. You shouldn't have a season where the yard looks bland. Also pick plants that add color in various ways. You don't just need flowers to add color. Add plants that have add color through their leaves or needles or through their bark. Add plants that flower in different months.

Very sound advice! We have a lot of bright colors here in the spring that change to more muted colors in the fall. Kind of like changing the gardens wardrobe! I like plants with verigated color in the leaves. We had some ginger a few years back that had enough yellow in the leaves that even in the shade it gave the illusion of the sun peaking through the trees.

Last year our local power company came by and did some heavy pruning to our trees that were close to the lines along the back fence. This year I'm having to learn how to garden with additional sun again! We planted some zinnia to take over as the pansies began to die back and we have a lot of vinca planted both as plants and some that was naturalized from the plants that went to seed last year. My ferns, which used to be all over one half of the garden have now shrunk back to about a quarter of the area. We also have a ton of day lillies. I love them because we get beautiful flowers from them in the spring and early summer, but have greenery pretty much all year from them. In the front yard we have a lovely garden with a lot of naturalized plants. One variety that has been very prolific is the New Guinea (or maybe African?) Impatiens. They get really tall with these ultra deep violet flowers all summer. The greenery sticks around all winter as well. I love living in South/Central Texas!

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