White At Night: Illuminate Your Garden


Light up the night with white! Plant white flowers and light foliage to create a garden that glows.

White flowers are frequently overlooked because we want to see colors in our gardens. Reds, blues, pinks, yellows tend to stand out and we can see them quite well. White flowers reflect light and seem to shine at night.

White flowers can really be spectacular especially at night with proper lighting. Many plants flower at night and have wonderful evening fragrances. Bees are not the only pollinators in a garden. Moths also work spreading pollen around and are primarily out at night. So enhance your garden to include night time interest.

Proper lighting can really make your night garden come alive. Whether it’s a small focal point, a pathway, a mass planting or a tree of any size, lighting will add new dimensions to your landscape.

The Patio

The patio is a perfect place for containers. Whether the area is shaded or sunny during the day, there are many whites that will bring life to evening.

Focal Point

Sometimes we have small gardens that don’t allow for a lot of volume. These are perfect for creating a night time focal point: an individual flowering tree, shrub or perennial flower will pop out with a small spot light on it. The combination of a tree or shrub with a skirt of white is a great option. There are many grasses that have white variegated leaves which could work very well.

The Pathway

Pathways at night can be greatly enhanced by adding white along the way. Low overhead lighting can make your pathway shine and add some romance to the garden whether it’s path through the trees or brightening up a cement walk way.

The Mass Planting

When space allows, mass plantings are a great way to make the landscape come alive at night by using a combination of flood and canopy lighting. From short bedding plants such as petunias, pansies, stock and creeping phlox to taller flowers like white Iris, Jacob’s Ladder, Obedient Plant and Peonies; medium – tall shrubs like Variegated Dogwood, Mock Orange, Snowball Bush, Butterfly Bush, White Roses, ‘Diana’ or ‘White Chiffon’ Rose of Sharon and Dappled Willow to trees of all sizes: Western Catalpa, Flowering Pear, Tree Lilac, ‘Butterfly’ Japanese Maple, Merrill and Star Magnolias and Spring Snow Crab Apple.

There are many more options than the few listed here. The site will dictate which plants will do better. When shopping for plants, always tell the nursery professional the area where you live and what type of soil you have and if the area gets full sun, part shade or full shade.

Lighting from Landscape Lighting Pro of Utah: www.utahlights.com

White at Night Plant List:


Four O’Clocks (Mirabilis jalapa)

White Petunia

White Geraniums


White Cosmos (Cosmos bipinnatus ‘Purity’)

White Impatients


White Pansy

White Lobelia

Night Phlox

White Snapdragon


Evening Primrose (Oenotheraspeciosa)

Variegated Hosta (Hosta sp.)

Creeping Phlox (

White Garden Mums (

White Iris (

Moonflower (Daturawrightii) native, intense fragrance, watch open.

White Jacob’s Ladder (Polemoniumcaeruleum)

White Obedient Plant (Physostegiavirginiana)

Goat’s Beard (

White Nancy (Lamium)

White Peony


Variegated Japanese Silver Grass (Miscanthussinensis ‘Variegata’)

Morning Light Japanese Silver Grass (Miscanthussinensis ‘Morning Light’)

Overdam Feathered Reed Grass (Calamagrostisacutifolia)

Pampas Grass (Cortaderiaselloana) marginallyhardy


Variegated Red Twig Dodwood(Cornus alba ‘Baihalo’ or ‘Elegantissima’)

Mock Orange (Philadelphusvirginalis) and (Philadelphuscoronarius)

Snowball Bush (Viburnum opulus)

Yucca (Yucca filamentosa)

Dappled Willow (Salix ‘HakuroNashiki’)

Butterfly Bush (Buddleiadavidii)

White Roses (Rosa sp.)

White Rhododendron (Rhododendron ‘Catawbiense’)

Rose of Sharon (Hibiscus syriacus ‘Diana’)

Rose of Sharon (Hibiscus syriacus ‘White Chiffon’)


Climbing Hydrangea (Hydrangea anomalapetiolaris)

Sweet Autumn Clematis (Clematis paniculata)

Hall’s Honeysuckle (Lonicera japonica)

Porcelain Vine (Ampelopsis brevipedunculata)


Western Catalpa (Catalpa speciosa)

Flowering Pear (Pyruscalleryana)

Whitebud (Cerciscanadensis ‘Alba’)

Tree Lilac (Syringareticulata)

Butterfly Japanese Maple (Acer palmatum ‘Butterfly’)

MerrillMagnolia (Magnolia x loeberni)

Star Magnolia (Magnolia stellata)

For more gardening and landscape design ideas, visit www.trellisgardencenter.com

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