Three Trends to Try in Your Garden

It’s that time of the year! Garden season! Will you be hauling out the same garden art this year? Buying the same plants? Going with the same color palette? Maybe it’s time to change things up!

The Garden Media Group, which is based in Kennett Square, releases a Trends Report each year that encourages people to connect with the natural world and do their part to create havens for birds, insects and humans. Their crystal ball is always spot on. They predicted the rise in the popularity of outdoor living way back in 2001, touted container gardening as a way for everyone to dig in the dirt, and championed the power gardening possesses to alleviate stress and anxiety. This year’s theme is Eco-Optimism, which “underscores the green industry’s potential to alleviate eco-anxiety among the 1.2 billion young people striving to contribute positively to the climate. By illustrating the benefits of planting natives, minimizing traditional lawns and growing food, the industry is poised to be a positive beacon and foster loyal enthusiasts.” In the report, three gardening trends are explored that provide a creative outlet for adventuresome gardeners.


Our interest in the sun, moon and stars (and outer space) has translated to gardening. It seems that growers and hybridizers are responding by developing plants that exhibit neon color palettes and alien shapes. Think unusual succulents, plants with silvery leaves (“Sterling Moon’ Lunar Brights Begonia from the Southern Living Plant Collection, available at Stauffers and Esbenshade’s garden centers, is one such introduction), and those with celestial names (such as the ‘Night Sky’ purple and white petunia).

Continue the theme by utilizing neon-colored containers. Heck, add an alien or two to your beds. Paint outdoor furniture an eye-popping shade or utilize cushions or throw pillows that deliver a wow factor. Finally, illuminate areas with neon lights and glowing orbs of color.

Now that you’re finished, sit back with a cosmic cocktail!

Go Goth

It seems like just yesterday gardeners were utilizing white blooms to create that glow-in-the-moonlight effect. As is customary, the pendulum is now swinging in the other direction thanks in part to Gen Zers who love Steampunk and Goth. In social media speak, the gardening style is known as #VictorianGardens, #Halloweengardens, #Gothgardens and “Steampunkgardens. According to the Garden Media Group, the inspiration for the style harkens back to the Victorian era, when cemeteries did double duty as green getaways for urban dwellers. In many such cemeteries gravesites were filled with flowering plants that were tended to by family members.

Again, growers and hybridizers are reacting to the trend by developing dark-hued plants. Remember all the buzz years ago that surrounded black pansies and daylilies? Now, everything from tulips and roses to succulents, coleus, sunflowers, poppies and snapdragons are available in dark hues that range in color from blood red to black.

As for ambiance, uplighting trees will set the mood after dark. Look for Goth-inspired statuary.

Cyber Lime

The Garden Media Group always selects its own color of the year and for 2024, it’s Cyber Lime. Described as a “punchy near-neon color that symbolizes energy and provides a connection between nature and technology, it contrasts with and complements a host of other colors including fuchsia, orange, pink, purple, white and black.

Even the plant world is echoing the hue, as varieties of hydrangea, echinacea, heuchera, hellebores, Japanese forest grass, hosta and zinnias are now available in shades of lime. Ditto for house plants from growers such as Costa Farms.

For more information, visit gardenmediagroup.com.

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