Cover image for The flower-powered garden : supercharge your borders and containers with bold, colourful plant combinations / Andy Vernon.
The flower-powered garden : supercharge your borders and containers with bold, colourful plant combinations / Andy Vernon.
Publication Information:
Portland, Oregon : Timber Press, 2018.

Physical Description:
295 pages : color illustrations ; 28 cm
Reinventing bedding displays -- Plant care & cultivation -- Colour planting themes -- A florapedia of marvellous plants.
"Do you long for a garden bursting with colour? Let Andy Vernon--an award-winning garden writer, photographer, and horticultural consultant--be your guide. In Flower-Powered Garden, he shares tips on reimagining beds and borders, expert advice on plant care, fifteen dazzling colour themes, and a florapedia of marvellous plants,"--page [4] of cover.

Do you long for a garden bursting with colour? Vernon shares tips on reimagining beds and borders, expert advice on plant care, fifteen dazzling colour themes, and a florapedia of marvellous plants. He shows you how to have fun in your garden: flaunt your plants, parade them in front of your audience, and sit back to take the accolades you-- and the plants-- deserve. -- Adapted from back cover and introduction.


Call Number
Material Type
Home Location
635.968 VER Book Adult General Collection

On Order



"Vernon's gorgeously illustrated an indispensable resource for anyone looking to add a powerful punch of color to their garden." -- Library Journal

The Flower-Powered Garden urges home gardeners to embrace one of the most joyful and important parts of the garden--color! Andy Vernon, a self-professed flower fanatic, highlights perennials and annuals that pack a punch, and shares 15 color combinations that can be used in containers and gardens. The boisterous combinations are inspired by some of Vernon's favorite things--like sherbet, birds, and candy. A floripedia of 50 marvelous plants includes colorful favorites like dahlias, petunias, hollyhocks, fuchsias, and more. Vernon also shares basic gardening tips, with helpful advice on planting, watering, soil, and growing in containers. This colorful guide has everything you need to supercharge your garden with the power of flowers!

Author Notes

Andy Vernon is a producer-director of popular gardening TV programs for the BBC including Gardeners' World and The Great British Garden Revival . He trained at the Royal Horticultural Society Gardens at Wisley and worked at the Royal Botanic Gardens, Kew. He lives in Cheshire, England, where he runs Planet Dahlia, a horticultural media consulting firm.

Reviews 1

Library Journal Review

British gardening expert and award-winning author Vernon (The Plant Lover's Guide to Dahlias) is on a horticultural mission to bring back color in gardens. He intends to do this by reintroducing gardeners to the concept of bedding plants. After providing the basics on improving soils, watering, mulching, and dealing with garden pests, Vernon uses 15 different color-themed planting schemes to demonstrate the ways in which bedding plants such as petunias, dahlias, and begonias can be incorporated into not just beds and borders but pots and patios, as well as balconies and baskets. A floripedia covering 50 different types of bedding plans rounds out the valuable information offered here to aspiring bedding plant enthusiasts. VERDICT While many standard gardening guides, such as The New Sunset Western Garden Book, supply the basics of incorporating flowers into a landscape, Vernon's gorgeously illustrated guide drills down deep into the topic, making this an indispensable resource for anyone looking to add a powerful punch of color to their garden.-John Charles, formerly with Scottsdale P.L., AZ © Copyright 2018. Library Journals LLC, a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted.



Introduction I should begin by holding my hands up and admitting that when it comes to plants, I'm an addict. A plantaholic. A full-on floral and foliage fanatic. Guilty on both counts. But it gets worse. I'm obsessed with colour, too. I can't get enough of the stuff. I'd even confess that I may have a bit of a colour fetish. So in the summer, when bright and brash or deep and decadent blooms are blooming and lusciously coloured leaves are unfurling at full tilt, I get giddy. I have to add, though: I can't really be blamed for this addiction. As a young boy, I spent a lot of time with my rather wonderful granddad, who also loved his blooms--and in particular, his bedding out. His pride and joy was a most amazing collection of regal pelargoniums. He grew them at the bottom of his backyard, in a curious building that was both my nan and granddad's outdoor bathroom and a sort of greenhouse cum potting shed. I can still smell that earthy, musty sweet scent it had. I loved to sneak inside and gaze at the impressive fl oral specimens, arranged on shelves and ledges around the bathtub. Granddad won lots of prizes for his regal pelargoniums at local horticultural shows. His passion for plants was much broader than just posh sounding geraniums, however. Granddad was a brilliant gardener with a fl air for propagating all sorts of plants, which then filled up his various allotments and his backyard. He grew giant shrubby clouds of blue hydrangeas in big barrel pots at either side of the back door; standard fuchsias festooned with hundreds of dingle-dangle fl oral earrings; and hanging baskets overflowing with petunias, busy lizzies, coleus, and begonias. His numerous allotments were full of annuals and more-upright blooms for cutting, from dahlias, zinnias, and gaillardias to snapdragons and big shaggy China asters. And as if all this weren't floriferous enough, Granddad and I would often walk to the park of a Sunday afternoon. On the way in, I would stop to admire the continual fl utter of blue, green, and yellow budgies in the aviary near the entrance, but then we'd hurry on to take in the main event. The park's amazingly colourful beds and borders were decked out in scarlet sage, purple cherry-pie-scented heliotropes, and plumes of feathery celosias; flossy blue ageratums circled tangerine tagetes, and busty tuberous begonias were hemmed in with white sweet alyssum, silver ragwort (dusty miller, to Granddad), and--of course--waves of navy blue lobelias. For an already flower- and colour-obsessed youngster like me, the formal park displays were a treat to visit and directly fuelled my own horticultural passions. In retrospect, it's no wonder I still adore these vibrant, cheery, no-nonsense blooms. I like their kaleidoscopic colours, and their slightly bold and brassy attitude. I now enjoy visiting different sorts of gardens; I like sustainable perennial plantings, and I'm keen on hardy shrubs and trees and gardening for birds and bees. But sometimes it feels like the planting palette in our gardens and parks has become predictable, just a little too polite, and occasionally a bit boring. I find myself really missing the fearlessly floriferous plants of my granddad's world. They're the plants that, deep down, I truly revel in. However, in some haughty horticultural circles, my love of bedding blooms is a love that dare not speak its name. These plants are not trendy; they're deemed high maintenance, old hat, and they can be dismissed as unsustainable and a bit naff. This only makes me love and champion their outrageous, over-the-top, super-floriferous character even more. Secretly I do sometimes wonder if it's a case of "the lady doth protest too much." Legions of dahlia lovers are finally holding their heads up high and coming out of the closet, so I'm convinced that there might be quite a few gardeners who, like me, are proud to shout about their love of petunias, pelargoniums, and a whole raft of fabulous bedding blooms. I'm hoping they're all just waiting for the rebellion to happen and ready to march for an end to begonia bullying. To me, bedding out is a welcome breath of fresh air. It's fun, it's frivolous, it's attention-grabbing, and it's super-colourful. That's its job, and its point. Every leaf and petal in a colourful bedding display emanates a sheer lust for life that fills me with energy and makes me feel pepped up and ready to take on the world. Surely that can't be a bad thing? Excerpted from The Flower-Powered Garden: Supercharge Your Borders and Containers with Bold, Colourful Plant Combinations by Andy Vernon All rights reserved by the original copyright owners. Excerpts are provided for display purposes only and may not be reproduced, reprinted or distributed without the written permission of the publisher.