Viola x wittrockiana ‘Halloween II’ – This winter pansy is ideal for those Halloween planters as it prefers a cooler growing season. It bears jet black blooms (on short stems) with a small contrasting bright yellow eye and prefers part to full sun exposures. The plants are well-branched and floriferous. Beautiful in combination with Dusty Miller. Grows 6-8″ high by 8-10″ wide. Zone 5.
Dianthus RASPBERRY SWIRL (syn. ‘Devon Siskin’, ‘Siskin Clock’) – This dwarf garden pink is a part of the Dessert Series and features a low mound of greyish-green evergreen foliage. It bears fragrant light pink (fading to white) single blooms with a deep maroon eye and edges. Flowering begins in early summer and repeats in fall. Grows 7″ high by 8-14″ wide. Hardy to zone 5.
Zantedeschia ‘Black Forest’ (syn. ‘Schwarzwalder’) – This tender Calla Lily bears glossy burgundy-black spathes from June to August with deadheading, with these making excellent cut flowers. Bright green foliage accented with white spots adds to the overall display. Lift the tubers at the first sign of frost and store like a dahlia in a cool location. Grows 16-18″ high by 16″ wide. Z8.
Justicia brandegeeana – This tender evergreen shrub is often used as a standard in summer bedding. Mexican Shrimp Plant is an RHS Award of Garden Merit winner which bears terminal clusters of white flowers with overlapping bronze-red bracts throughout the summer. Overwinter indoors as a houseplant. Grows 3-4′ high and wide (depending on pruning). Zone 9.
Acanthus mollis – Bear’s Breeches is a bold architectural perennial that really belongs in more mixed borders. It produces tall spires of white flowers heavily accented by burgundy bracts and stems, blooming from June to August. The large glossy green (somewhat holly-like) lobed leaves are often evergreen through mild winters. Good cut flower. Grows 3-5′ tall by 2-3′ wide. Z7.