this three-tiered combination of perennial purple coneflowers, tawny ornamental grasses and low-growing tufts of day lily foliage would also work as a sidewalk combination. The purple coneflowers are particularly long-blooming and, in combination with the tall ornamental grasses, will carry the garden through fall. Plants in this garden bed include: ‘Magnus’ purple coneflower (Echinacea purpurea ‘Magnus’, zones 3 to 8) ‘Karl Foerster’ feather reed grass (Calamagrostis x acutiflora ‘Karl Foerster’, zones 4 to 9) ‘Stella de Oro’ day lily (Hemerocallis ‘Stella de Oro’, zones 4 to 9), after blooming
(Podocarpus elongatus ‘Monmal’, zones 9 to 11) — a narrow, upright shrub — to grow alongside the garage, leaving room for other plants in the tiny space. A combination of low-water succulents, mounding ‘Elijah Blue’ fescue (Festuca glauca ‘Elijah Blue’, zones 4 to 8) and foxtail fern (Asparagus densiflorus ‘Myers’, zones 9 to 11) fill in the ground-level planting.
a solution for a drought-tolerant garage-side planting. The designer used a combination of autumn moor grass (Sesleria autumnalis, zones 5 to 8), taller ‘Karl Foerster’ feather reed grass (Calamagrostis x acutiflora ‘Karl Foerster’, zones 4 to 9) and ‘Furman’s Red’ autumn sage (Salvia greggii ‘Furman’s Red’, Zone 7).
Red bird-of-paradise isn't fussy. Plant it in an area with full sun in well-drained soil. Maintenance is simple: Prune back severely in winter to 1 foot high. Once spring arrives it will grow back quickly, and it will begin blooming in April or May. In colder areas (zone 8), mulch the base of the shrub in winter to protect the roots. To extend the flowering period, lightly prune by removing the top 2 feet in August, which will stimulate new blooms through October. Plant in groups of 3 or 5.