Your favorite companions for WHITE roses

twinkletoad(7B)March 27, 2014

I know that white tends to go with everything, but what are your very favorite companion plants to go with your white roses?

I was thinking white garden phlox and something with variegated leaves might be pretty for a monochromatic look.

I'd love to hear your ideas!

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the_morden_man((Z4-Z5) Ontario, Canada)

Red roses and lilac/mauve blooming clematis. :)

There is also a fantastic recent coreopsis that is deep red, that is hardy and blooms in absolute profusion from late spring till frost here. No mildew to speak of either. It is called 'Mercury Rising'. I can't recommend it enough.

I'm also partial to Butterfly Blue Scabiosa (Pincushion Flower) with white roses, or if a taller plant is needed, a blue/lavender toned peach-leafed bellflower or delphinium.

    Bookmark   March 27, 2014 at 11:55AM
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twinkletoad(7B)

You've painted some pretty pictures for me to think about on this cold day! Thank you!

Mercury Rising is beautiful! I like it better than the yellow I had. I saw it pictured on a web site with deep violet flowers in the background and they look great together. Can anyone tell what this violet flower is? I'd love to pair the two! See the link.

Here is a link that might be useful: mercury rising coreopsis

    Bookmark   March 27, 2014 at 12:06PM
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vasue(7A Charlottesville)

Twinkletoad, the violet flower looks like one of the perennial geraniums, perhaps a Geranium phaeum. There are many kinds & crosses. I'm partial as well to Butterfly Blue scabiosa, and the soft yellow one, Ochroleuca, with roses and varied plantings. Dianthus are lovely with roses & many have white markings that play off white roses. Silver foliage plants add depth to the whites, too.

    Bookmark   March 28, 2014 at 12:39AM
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Campanula UK Z8

The purple flower is geranium x magnificum. I am with Marjory Fish, here - when all else fails (especially inspiration), plant a geranium.

What soil do you have - acid, alkaline, sandy, clay?
Aspect? Rose?

There are so many, many possibilities, it is easier to narrow the options by consideration of other criteria.

I have been baffled by the huge interest in coreopsis in the US ( with echinaceas and hemerocallis - along with heuchera, I always think of them as the 'American quartet'). They certainly never look anything like the photo in my garden and I have absolutely sworn off them once and for all.

    Bookmark   March 28, 2014 at 7:22AM
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twinkletoad(7B)

Thank you so much for identifying the geranium. I wanted to add some to my garden last year but didn't find a color that I was crazy about. I will be on the lookout early in the season this year!

Vasue, the idea of dianthus with white markings is a great idea. I love the white ones with purple in the middle. Have you seen the maroon-ish "black" dianthus with white borders? They are stunning. The fragrance is a bonus!

I have the Butterfly Blue scabiosa planted next to my Pope John Paul II. You are right, it's a good combination.

Campanula, I was curious to hear of others' ideas more for color inspiration and not necessarily for specific plants, although that is helpful. I've never been very good at "layering" flowers- you know, short in the front, tall in the back, etc. for a constant bloom season. I'm still learning and it's helpful for me to hear what others are planting.

My soil tends to be acidic because I live in North Carolina, but I always add compost and manure when I plant. The white/ almost white roses I have are PJP II, Bolero, Mme Alfred Carriere, Ducher, Marie Pavie, Sombreuil, Darlow's Enigma and Sugar Moon. I'd like to add more creams/whites!

Also, I grow echinaceas for the bees, along with cleome. They absolutely love those plants in my garden. (I grow vegetables and my neighbor is a bee keeper, so I want to keep the bees happy!)

Thank you all for all of the lovely ideas so far.

    Bookmark   March 28, 2014 at 9:42AM
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Desertgarden- NW Las Vegas Z9a @ 2300 f

I do not know how well these plants perform where you garden, but lambs ears, lavender, day lilies, beard tongue, salvia.

What garden style are you trying to create?

Lynn

    Bookmark   March 28, 2014 at 10:25AM
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hoovb zone 9 sunset 23

Geranium 'Rozanne', Salvia 'Wendy's Wish'.

    Bookmark   March 28, 2014 at 10:44AM
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twinkletoad(7B)

Thanks, Lynn - the plants you mentioned do well in my area. I planted beard tongue/penstemon last year and it did very well to my surprise!

I love cottage gardens best. I am trying to work in some evergreens to create some structure, but I love finding surprises everywhere. That's the best part of a cottage garden to me. I grew alpine strawberries from seed last year and this year the birds and other critters have helped spread them to other unexpected parts of the garden, sometimes in the middle of the path. I just love that.

Hoovb- Rozanne is gorgeous. Do you have her in full sun or part shade there in CA? I like the looks of Salvia, but last year I was walking through my garden and thought my cats had been spraying- then I realized it was the Salvia. I wonder if there are less odoriferous varieties? I think mine is May Night.

    Bookmark   March 28, 2014 at 11:14AM
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jacqueline9CA

Since you listed Sombreuil and MAC, here is a pic of Sombreuil with purple and red (clematis Jackmanii and Cl Crimson Glory old HT):

    Bookmark   March 28, 2014 at 12:33PM
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seil zone 6b MI

I think just about any color looks good with white. the question is more about what colors you like. Pick out two of your favorite colors or favorite flowers and go with that. I'm sure it will be beautiful!

    Bookmark   March 28, 2014 at 12:34PM
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ArbutusOmnedo 10/24

I can second that 'Rozanne' is a great Geranium. It is close to a white rose here and looks fantastic. I personally like Diascias, Lupines, Iris, and Salvias near white roses.

Jay

    Bookmark   March 28, 2014 at 3:23PM
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growing_rene(7a/b)

Jacqueline, that combination is breathtaking. I have a clematis growing near my Cecile Brunner, I may have to move it closer to Oklahoma or Munstead Wood. Beautiful.

    Bookmark   March 28, 2014 at 5:16PM
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NewGirlinNorCal(9b)

twinkletoad- for everything but the most stiff/formal roses I love the way they look with catmint or other purple flowers underneath. Although for my personal white rose, which is a still un-id'd* polyantha-like thing, I have it underplanted with violets because it's impossible to get rid of violets.
*not a word, still using it.

Campanula- I have heucheras and I like them, but I try to get the least "fancy" kind possible. Green leaves and pink flowers are plenty good enough for me. The flowers are a lot of fun and very popular with bees and hummingbirds and such, and when they're out of bloom the mounds are a nice texture with my other plants. I am not fond of the new yellow/orange/spotted varieties because every time I see one I think it's caught some dread plant disease.

    Bookmark   March 28, 2014 at 6:54PM
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twinkletoad(7B)

Sorry for late response- limited access to email this weekend!
Gorgeous photo, Jacqueline3! My Sombreuil only has 1 cane- I hope she beefs up. I'm fertilizing this evening, actually!

seil- I love shades of lavender and apricot. I think those both look nice and soft with white. But the bold of the red and purple in the photo above is really striking.

Jay, it did not occur to me to mingle irises next to my roses in front. I have no idea why! I'm definitely going to do that, as well as look for the apricot variety of Diascias, Rozanne geranium, and more cat mint.

NewGirl - "not a word, still using it" - this made me laugh.
And I LOVE the idea of violets under roses! Mingled with these icy-colored, barely-periwinkle irises I have, it would be very pretty.

Also thought about nicotiana alata and nigella...

Many good ideas from everyone here! Thank you!

    Bookmark   March 31, 2014 at 1:04PM
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kingcobbtx9b

Maybe I watched Alice in Wonderland too much as a child, but I like red roses with White.

    Bookmark   March 31, 2014 at 3:40PM
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hoovb zone 9 sunset 23

Here in Sunset 23 'Rozanne' is best in a lot of sun. In morning sun/afternoon shade not so good--sparse of leaf and bloom. In mostly shade, it gives up.

HOWEVER, the first year, the plant can struggle with hot days in summer and needs extra water. After it establishes it seems to take hot days just fine, and blooms away. Farther away from the coast probably a little more shade, in Sunset 24 probably all day sun is best.

Oh yes, lavender blue clematis, great idea. I'm going to add a 'Perle d'Azur' to my climbing Iceberg. That will screech some brakes.

    Bookmark   April 1, 2014 at 10:59AM
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portia(PA 6B, Brandywine)

Lavender is my favorite with creamy white...but I do have a love for hot pinks too, aka Salvia. Oh and forget me nots, that blue.

    Bookmark   April 1, 2014 at 12:01PM
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