Paradise 2020
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Opposites attract
Take a bow, shell ginger! The best way to build off of the excitement of this unique plant is to add plants that are nothing like it. Plants of opposite color, like the purple shades of impatiens, purple heart and elephant ear, pleasantly interrupt the mass of variegated green. The elephant ear looms, and creeping Jenny crawls for playful height difference, but they also offer a needed cohesiveness as they spread alongside the ginger. Depending on amounts of shade, the elephant ears will grow even larger; the more shade, the bigger the leaves. Where they are hardy they will grow taller— sometimes 12 to 15 feet —but in colder climates, where the rhizomes of the ginger and elephant ear are dug up and stored inside for winter, they stay around 6 to 8 feet tall. The impatiens bloom spring through fall, so this colorful sight will always greet you. Even though their differences are attractive, these plants do share important commonalities: part shade, well-drained soil and consistent moisture.