10 beautiful pink flowers for your summer garden – The Middle-Sized Garden


May 31st, 2020 Posted In: Garden style & living

Pink flowers are at the heart of my summer garden colour.

While editing my photos for my summer garden tour, I noticed that the most beautiful plants and plant combinations had pink or variations of pink in them.

So here are some pink flowers and why you should consider them.

Roses – the classic pink flowers

You have to start with roses when you’re thinking about pink flowers, don’t you?

But they don’t have to be pastel, sugary pinks (although I love those too). The deep rich pinks, like Charles D Mills rose – below – add depth and richness to a border scheme.

Charles D Mills climbing rose in a deep rich pink. This adds a punch to the flowers around it.

If you garden in a tricky situation, such as a windy or exposed site, then try the deep pink ‘Gabriel Oak’ from David Austin Roses. It has been bred to grow in poor soil or in shadier parts of the garden.

Burgundy Ice rose

Another moody, brooding pink rose – Burgundy Ice. It is a fabulous repeat flowerer and goes on all summer.

Queen of Sweden rose

Add classic beauty and elegance with a pale pink rose – this is Queen of Sweden.

Pink peonies – but think about the foliage

Peonies, like roses, are classic pink flowers. I have three peonies in this garden. I love them for their emerging foliage in spring – it goes so beautifully with primroses.

All peonies have good spring foliage. But when buying a peony, ask about its autumn foliage. This peony below is unnamed because it was in the garden when we moved in. It has beautiful autumn foliage and so contributes to the garden for three seasons a year.

Pink peony

An un-named peony, but it has beautiful autumn foliage. If I was buying another peony, I would definitely prioritise this aspect – my other two peonies are very beautiful in flower but just collapse in autumn.

Self-seeding pink flowers

Is it my imagination or are many of the best self-seeding flowers pink?

Self-seeders are a big part of my garden in May and June – I counted more than 25 different types of self seeder.

Foxgloves often seem to do best when they self seed. They are marvellously architectural as well as being pretty.

Self seeded foxgloves

Foxgloves self-seed around my garden. They choose which colours they want to be. If you want self-seeded foxgloves, you need to let the flowers set seed so don’t clear them away as soon as they are over.

Bee friendly pink flowers

Bees particularly love purple as they can see it well. I have bees buzzing around my purple alliums, but pollinating insects also love all open centred flowers.

Lychnis coronaria

This is Lychnis coronaria or Red campion. It’s very easy to grow from seed, although it’s a spreading perennial and will drift around your garden in clumps and waves if you let it. Pollinators love it. The grey foliage also adds some contrast to the greens of summer and I think the shape of the plant is interesting too.

Pink irises…

Where would the summer garden be without a pink iris? They are so beautifully sculptural, yet are very easy care (see this post about choosing and growing irises.)

Iris Beverley Sills

This is iris ‘Beverley Sills’. She looks so pretty and fragile, but survives very happily in my somewhat chaotic border, coming back year after year.

Try an unusual pink variety

It’s always nice to buy a common plant in an unusual colour or variant. I love this black elder, and its foliage adds drama to the border from spring to the end of summer. It’s deciduous, so has no leaves in winter. It’s easy care and its pink flowers are very, very pretty.

Black elder

This is black elder or Sambucus nigra. I think it adds so much contrast to the garden as well as having pretty pink flowers.

Pink perennials

There are lots of wonderful pink perennials – bergenias, dahlias, echinacea, dianthus, asters, delphiniums and more. My favourite for May and June is verbascum. It’s loved by bees and has distinctive spikes.

Verbascum 'Copper Rose'

Some people say that verbascum can be tricky plants to grow, but this ‘Copper Rose’ seems to be completely unfussy and has come back for the third year in a row.

Pink flowers that are almost weeds…

We’re getting more relaxed about weeds (see this post on Wild About Weeds by Jack Wallington). And there are some very pretty pink weeds, such as toadflax, wood sorrel, rosebay willowherb and herb Robert.

And there are also plants that are almost weeds, such as this beautiful wild gladioli (Gladiolus communis subsp ‘Byzantius’) that has romped round this garden for 80+ years.

Wild gladioli

When is a plant a weed? This wild gladioli self seeds itself round this garden. I met someone who was born in this house in 1937 and he remembers this in the garden from his childhood. So it may have been here for hundreds of years. Luckily no-one has successfully weeded it out, because there was certainly a time when it would have been regarded as a ‘weed.’

See the early summer garden in video

There are more views of the garden and its pink flowers in this video.

Shop my favourite gardening tools, books and products

I’m often asked for recommendations so I’ve put together lists of the gardening tools, books and products I use myself on the Middlesized Garden Amazon store. Links to Amazon are affiliate so I may get a small fee if you buy, but I only list the products I use myself and believe you would like.

For example, if you want to find out more about which plants to choose for your garden, I’ve put together a list of my favourite books on plants. It includes 365 Days of Colour in Your Garden by Nick Bailey and The Bold and Brilliant Garden by Sarah Raven.

And do let me know which gardening books you find particularly helpful when you’re choosing garden plants.

Pin to remember pink flowers

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