Discover 10 unique design ideas to make your flower garden even better for the outdoors.

Spring Flower Garden Ideas

A welcome burst of post-winter color comes courtesy of early-season flowers. When designing a flowerbed, plant in waves of color. These pink and yellow tulips provide an early burst of blooms in the spring. Not all plants in a flower garden need be in the ground—here, the pretty blooms of Endless Summer hydrangeas fill a row of containers. As a bonus, the containers can be moved to add color to other sections of the garden. A short row of boxwood, planted in the middle of a flowerbed, offers visual relief. If your bed is large, paths will make maintenance easier and enable visitors to wander through. Pastel hues—yellow, pink, lavender—in lighter tones blend well in this composition.


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Charming Curves

Undulating borders contain beautiful blooms in this flower garden. Mulch is an essential; it keeps the weeds down and conserves moisture. Use geometry to contrast or complement. Here, the flowerbed’s curving borders repeat in the gentle edging of lawn. Plants chosen in mostly similar hues—lavender, light purple, and fuchsia, for example—offer a soothing palette. Access to, around, and through the garden is via a series of round paving stones. Hardscape structures—such as this garden’s tall birdhouse—add whimsy to function.


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Spreading Cheer

Blooms brighten this flower garden. In place of a more formal material, gravel paths meander through the casual plantings. Meadow rue, planted at regular intervals along the back of the bed, provides vertical interest. A large decorative urn provides a segue between planted and paved areas. Remember the rule of three: Group three of each plant to create visual consistency. Here, black-eyed Susans offer a cheery base for other plantings. Low-growing catmint gently transitions between the path and the flowerbed.


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Room for a View

Prolific, sun-loving flowers surround a table and chairs in this welcoming flower garden idea. Here, a seating area is surrounded by a lush bed of blooms. If trees and shrubs aren’t used to define a back border, use another hardscape structure, such as the purple trellis here. Planting one flower in a variety of colors can make an impact, like these charming masses of pink, yellow, and white daylilies. Densely planted flowerbeds help to keep down weeds and conserve moisture; decrease the recommended spacing by half for growth that fills in quickly. Choose your outdoor furniture in colors that blend seamlessly into the landscape, such as the pretty sage green, purple, and peach in this garden.


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Around the Bend

Here, pretty plants supply a boundary for a walkway. A relaxing garden bench under a pergola is a scenic resting spot. A dramatic tree gives height to a bed planted mostly in flowers. This Japanese maple, for instance, offers both color and seasonal foliage. Annuals, such as lavender and fuchsia petunias, fill bare spots in a perennial garden. When choosing plants for a flowerbed, include vivid hues—the yellow of black-eyed Susan, for example—to attract birds and butterflies.

  • See more plants that attract birds.
  • Grow the best plants for butterflies.


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Where the Garden Grows

A pretty bed of perennials takes center stage in this flower garden. Gravel fills the space between the paving stones, and offers a soft edge to the lush flowerbed. A boxwood border divides the bed from the wired pergola structure. Delicate spring pansies fill in spaces until the perennials come to full bloom in summer. Add plants that offer vertical growth, such as purple salvia. A dappled willow’s variegated foliage provides a color counterpoint to the deeper shades at the front of the bed.


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Side View

Gorgeous blooms fill a narrow stretch of this yard. A paved walkway provides a geometric contrast to the more casually planted bed. A climbing rose rambles up a wall to supply height and color. A small tuteur adds an unexpected element. Ivy climbs over the door and window awnings, where its green is a warm complement to the home’s neutral wall. Moveable containers planted in succulents and blooms complement the colors featured in the garden.

  • Get more ideas for landscaping your side yard.


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Stately Sculpture

Evergreens offer an interesting focal point in this beautiful flowerbed. Pines trimmed into a triangular shape offer drama. Annuals, perennials, and bulbs provide the garden with vivid color and interesting shapes. Here, gladiolas neatly contrast with the foliage and surrounding blooms. Consider plants for their sculptural value. Large swaths of color offer a soothing, restrained scene, but plants need not bloom in similar colors in order to work. Here, for example, the white gladiolas contrast with the red dahlias. If you’re content with minimalism, large groupings of similar flowers offer a fuss-free, showy landscape solution.


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Flower Flourish

A dramatic front yard flowerbed provides a constant stream of color. Use a planted edge to gently transition from lawn space to flowering space—here, for example, a miniature boxwood hedge offers an understated border. Breaking up a large flowering area with hardscape elements, such as short stretches of white picket fence, can provide welcome visual relief. Tall shrubs, loosely shaped into mounds, offer a backdrop to the waves of color. A trellis reaching beside and over the front door provides an easy, inexpensive way to train a climbing vine. Repeating plants and colors, such as patches of Endless Summer hydrangeas, daylilies, and astilbe, maintain consistency.


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Winsome Appeal

Nestled next to a small pond, this garden’s spots to rest and enjoy the blooms are key. Here, a stone bench provides views of both the plants and the water feature. Even though it’s nearly disguised in shrubs, a gazebo supplies an interesting hardscape element in this easygoing landscape. If your garden is large enough, a pathway like this one can diverge into two separate fingers. Rocks serve as an edging material. The foliage and flowers of coreopsis, phlox, coneflower, and feather reed grass offer pretty blooms and attract birds and butterflies.


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