This foliage-driven planting combination works best in morning sun, afternoon shade. The floating cloud maple (Acer 'Ukigumo') is all the more showy when planted in front of a rich green backdrop such as the Cryptomeria japonica 'Rein's Dense Jade (Japanese Cedar), the main evergreen anchor in this combo. With thoughtful placement, the Japanese Cedar could be situated to provide screening. This duo is complemented by blue hosta; the big, bold Blue Angel is echoed by the smaller Blue Mouse Ears. Flower power is provided by a succession of bloom that starts in early spring with the Late Snow primula and continues summer to fall with the blooms from Hydrangea 'Pia', a reliably compact hydrangea for small garden vignettes like this one. The showy pink foliage of Heuchera 'Berry Smoothie' goes great with all and is an evergreen groundcover to boot.
Exposure: Open Shade, Filtered Sun, Full Shade, Morning Sun, Part Shade
Water Needs: Average, Regular / Even
Features: Varied Foliage, Texture, and Form, Romantic Cool Colors, Fabulous Foliage
Focus: Mixed Border, Privacy and Screening
Seasons of Interest: Spring, Summer, Fall, Pleasing Seasonal Changes, Three Seasons of Interest
Maintenance Level: low