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Article: Picking a garden color scheme: Royal Horticulture Color Charts

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Forum: Article: Picking a garden color schemeReplies: 0, Views: 28
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Bellaire, TX

February 9, 2009
8:03 PM

Post #6115900

If you're serious about using color theory in your garden, you might want to purchase the RHS set of colors. They've taken the Munsel Color System and made some changes to make it more readily accessible for gardeners. Only one plant catalog (Plant Delights) that I know of, occasionally uses these to describe a bloom color which I've found extremely useful. The color charts come in four separate fans: Fan 1 = Yellow, Yellow-orange, Orange, Orange-red and Red groups; Fan 2 = Red-purple, Purple, Purple-violet, Violet, Violet-blue, and Blue groups; Fan 3 = Blue-green, Green, and Yellow-green groups; and Fan 4 = the Greyed Colors of Yellow, Orange, Red, Purple, Green, Brown, Grey, Black and White groups. Each fan has four individual "shades" which correspond to saturation levels with holes to permit placement over a leaf, flower, mulch, etc.

The packet of colors can be ordered over the internet from the RHS site, but is expensive ($253.42 today!). I've had mine for over ten years thank heavens, but there a much less costly smaller version. I've found the colors useful in other ways. The best and most technically accurate book on color for gardeners is "Color In Garden Design," by Sandra Austin. The only aspect she doesn't cover is the difference in color perception which occurs depending on location relative to the equator (it's not accident that countries in this location use brighter, more saturated colors. Go to and navigate to the shopping/products/colour charts to see.

Sandra's book also covers thorny questions like which colors work best with different house exterior types, etc. I recommend it without reservation.

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Other Article: Picking a garden color scheme Threads you might be interested in:

SubjectThread StarterRepliesLast Post
Your article leeflea51 0 Feb 9, 2009 9:28 AM
Color Wheels Potagere 8 Feb 14, 2009 7:55 PM
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Help with house color! irishdancer82 5 Feb 14, 2009 6:06 PM
Picking a garden color scheme beejay37 0 Jun 26, 2010 1:33 PM

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