Here is another column on the colors found in the garden, and this one is fairly obvious - green.
Even on a day like today, dull and windy and rainy with leaves already fallen and leftover plants turning brown and slimy, there is still a lot of green in the garden.
The grass is still green and shines in the mornings' frost.
All year around, the evergreen trees show their colors in all shades of green, from the blue tints of spruce to the grayish tones of Douglas fir, the yellow-green bald cypress and hemlock, dark arbor vitae and Austrian pine and the yellow tamarack.
But green is not limited to trees and grass.
There are many green flowers, and the first one that comes to mind is the Green Envy zinnia, which is easy to grow and flourishes in sun or part shade.
The lime green variety of Nicotiana is colorful and, although it is grown as an annual in our zone, it has a long blooming season with chartreuse blooms that have trumpet-shaped petals.
An interesting hydrangea is Limelight, which grows as a 6- or 8-foot-tall shrub and can be trained into a small tree and has soft, lime green flowers in late summer.
Envy is a coneflower that has mostly light green petals with red toward the center of the flower and a dark green central cone.
If you see beautiful green chrysanthemums in a wedding bouquet or other flower arrangement, they are probably Shamrock Chrysanthemums. These puffy beauties are made of hundreds of tiny petals that are narrow and curl upwards. These Shamrocks grow best in a greenhouse, but if you do manage to grow some outside, be sure to save the seeds of that hardy strain.
Bells of Ireland are tall, upstanding plants with green brachts. Much like the red "petals" of the poinsettia, these brachts form a showy, bell-shaped calyx, while the small, insignificant flowers are white. They grow in sun or partial shade.
Anyone, however black their thumb, can grow green hostas. (Just ask my granddaughter Brittany.) I think they are the hardiest plants in my flower borders, their clumps expanding each year, ready for division and sharing.
Leaves may combine their green with yellow, white or blue, and they may be puckered, corrugated, ribbed, curled, folded, variegated, dwarf, tall or enormous. There is one for everyone.
When making an indoor arrangement with flowers whose leaves are too small or unattractive, a hosta leaf will always complete the picture.
The last green in the vegetable garden was the Swiss chard, and I think it would be showing green still if I had not pulled it out for the sake of tidiness.
Onions and garlic are standing proud, and I want to pass on a tip about green onions which fits nicely into the theme of this column because I forgot to include it in a previous one about allium. Friend John told me a few weeks ago that if you save the root part of the onion you cut off when preparing it for salad, you can plant the root and it will grow.
I tried this out, and had a nice row of free, green onions.
Green is the color of hope. Even on the darkest wintry day, it is possible to go into the garden and find some color that reminds us spring will come.
Janet Del Turco is a local gardener and a graduate of the Ohio State
University Master Gardener program. Contact her at firstname.lastname@example.org.