color complements

Judy Glattstein
Sat, 25 Sep 2004 10:43:34 PDT
Unless plants are grown in isolation with a neutral gray background, there
is also the effect of adjacent plants on our subjective look at their color.

Colors next to each other on the color wheel relate harmoniously. Colors
across from each other on the color wheel, such as red to green, blue to
orange, purple to yellow, are called complementary colors. They have the
strongest contrast. Just as a pinch of seasoning spices up a dish, too much
can spoil it. A flower border designed mostly (I want to primarily, but
that's a dangerous term here, liable to misinterpretation) with related
colors, generally softened with some white to form tints of the chosen, more
saturated colors, will gain some zing with just a soupcon of the color

Purple with violet, lavender, and lilac, and just a smidge of a pale yellow
is attractive.

A border entirely of equal amounts of true blue and saturated orange is

Further, the adjacent color alters our perception of the color pair: just
envision a square of turquoise against green. Very different from a square
of turquoise against pink.

Johannes Itten, The Elements of Color, is a lovely little book on this

Judy in overcast but still mild New Jersey

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