Plants for Large Gardens – 28 Plants with Bold Foliage

By: edm
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Some of the most attractive plants have large, bold foliage. These bold plants work brilliantly in all gardens and make an impact with ease. If you like the idea of a tropical jungle-feel or a secret garden filled with wonder, then plants with bold foliage are ideal.

Here are 28 great plant options.

1. Canna


This incredible plant has large leaves that look like paddles. They are brightly coloured, and the strips of green and purple are breathtaking. The orange flowers make the canna plant a must-have.

2. Cardoon


These chunky plants work well when placed at the back of the boarders. The silver leaves can reach up to 1m in length. They bring a very tropical feel to anywhere they are planted. They have large flowers that look similar to a thistle in late summer and autumn. Planting these will bring plenty of birds to your garden.

3. Persian ivy

Persian ivy

Bright green leaves that look as if they have been splashed with yellow can brighten up almost any garden with ease. You might notice that this is sold as Paddy’s Pride. The Persian ivy grows quickly, and in the autumn you can look forward to lime-green flowers.

4. Angels trumpet

Angels trumpet

These trumpet-shaped flowers are eye-catching and have a stunning scent too. This one is best to be grown in a container though, and taken inside in the winter. It should be noted that this plant is harmful if ingested.

5. Elephants ears

Elephants ears plant

Also known as Bergenias, these pretty plants make excellent ground cover plants. The leaves can be purple, red and green all at once. In the spring you can look forward to pink flowers on tall stalks.

6. Ginger Lily

Ginger Lily

Perfect for a jungle-style garden, these large paddle-shaped leaves can give you a tropical feel. They are hardy too, which means they can last the winter.

7. Schefflera


The Schefflera Rhododendronifolia is one of the hardier varieties and can last well in a Uk garden. They have bold leaves and are deeply lobed. They bring a lot of dimension and design to a garden.

8. Hosta


These leaves come in vibrant green, white or silver. Making them one of the most exciting leaves you can have in your garden. The foliage is a bit of a pest magnet, so you will need to protect them from slugs and snails.

9. Regal Fern

Regal Fern

Ferns immediately give the impression of a jungle, Jurassic garden. The long leaves are always interesting to look at, and they add texture quickly.

10. Musa Basjoo Japanese Banana Plant

Musa Basjoo Japanese Banana Plant

Banana plants need to be watered and fed well. They add giant lush green leaves to any garden scheme. While the leaves look sturdy, they tear easily.

11. Chinese Rice Paper Plant

Chinese Rice Paper Plant

This giant plant will take up all the room it is given. It can reach a brilliant 2m high and is evergreen when the winter is mild. In the autumn you will get to enjoy cream flowers. Perfect for full sun, or partial shade.

12. Bear’s Breeches

Bear’s Breeches

Ideal for herbaceous borders, this plant produced tall spikes of white flowers. These are great when grown against other green plants. It needs moist but well-drained soil.

13. Angelica Archangelica

Angelica Archangelica

One of the most majestic biennial plants that have huge flowerheads. They are delicate fresh seedpods that are a perfect contrast with the stems that are pink-touched. The plant is used in both medicinal and culinary practices.

14. Athyrium Felix-Femina

Athyrium Felix-Femina

The Athyrium Felix-Femina is a delicate, lush green with ornate filigree leaves. These thrive when in a shady spot and work on the woodland edge too. The frond can snap very quickly if they aren’t well protected.

15. Chamaerops Humilis

Chamaerops Humilis

This a slow-growing plant that can be a beautiful focal point for a lush tropical feel garden. If you live in a colder area, then you are better growing this plant in a large pot and moving them indoors during the autumn months.

16. Gunnera Tinctoria

Gunnera Tinctoria

This plant produced large rhubarb like leaves, and they die down over autumn. This plant will thrive when it is in a large space. They also grow best in moist, rich soil. Unfortunately, they are prone to frost damage so will need protection in autumn and winter.

17. Tree Fern (Dicksonia Antartica)

Tree Fern (Dicksonia Antartica)

The tree fern is growing in popularity and make a huge statement in the garden. The trunk is very individual and can have a significant impact when paired with ferns. Giving a jungle feel.

18. Fatsia Japonica

Fatsia Japonica

The fatsia japonica is often grown in the home, as they add a deep green with large leaves. The glossy looking leaves add a quick tropical feel to your home or garden. The fatsia japonica is a hardy plant and can grow in many situations.

19. Melianthus Major

Melianthus Major

This plant can be grown outside in milder regions, or in a greenhouse or conservatory. This plant has incredible grey-green leaves, with deeply serrated edges. It actually looks like a row of sharp teeth.

They do look incredibly exotic and can go in most gardens. You can also wear these in a container and move these indoors in the autumn to prevent them from getting damaged by the colder weather.

20. Ricinus Communis (castor oil plant)

 Ricinus Communis (castor oil plant)

This plant has stunning purple foliage and will make an incredible addition to any garden. It is typically grown in containers as an annual, which means you can be moved around as required. It produces a greeny-yellow flower and is mainly grown for its very large red, and purple foliage. You have to so these early in the year and have them soaked beforehand. These plants are typically discarded at the end of the season come out, or they can be rehoused under glass.

21. Rodgersia


There are a few variations of this plant clock, and you will notice that it has a cluster of bright pink star-shaped flowers on darker stems. These arrive in mid to late summer. If you want to have the best the leaves out of this plant them pick a sunny spot in very moist soil. These works and right on the edge of a pond or a stream.

22. Trachycarpus Palm Tree

Trachycarpus Palm Tree

This plant can grow up to 20 m, but it might take 70 years in order to do so. These have huge fans that palm leaves can reach 2 m in length, and this can add such a significant impact into your garden. This palm tree definitely leans towards more of the California/tropical style of garden.

23. Cordyline Australis

Cordyline Australis

This carriage palm is a beautiful foliage plant. You be able to notice its large spiky leaves, and they have bold cream stripes and margins. It makes a great plant for patios or in other containers. It is evergreen and has a long thin arching bronze-red leaves. Mature plants I will produce branches of a very sweet smelling Ivy flowers in the summer.

24. Garrya Elliptica ‘James Roof.’

Garrya Elliptica

The mail form of this plant is more impressive, and it looks even more so when it is laden with the long elegant tassels over the winter and into early spring. The female plants have much smaller catkins, and clusters around the purple fruits over the summertime.

25. Ceanothus ‘California Lilac.’


One of the most coveted plants to put in a garden, Californian Lilac is free-flowering, offers beautiful foliage and is easy to cultivate. It even has drought and salt tolerance. Not only that but this Californian Lilac is fast growing too, and when they burst into bloom, they smell and look fantastic.

26. Long Leaved Eucalyptus

Long Leaved Eucalyptus

This is a beautiful and very interesting tree to look at. Architecturally the shaped trunk is going to add some interesting design details into your garden. It is better grown in some of the warmer regions. However, it is a relatively hardy plant. The flowers are the eucalyptus going to be in bunches of seven and are very much adored by pollinators. They are creamy white in colour.

27. Clianthus Puniceus ‘Rosea’ or ‘Flamingo.’

Clianthus Puniceus

The flamingo version blooms in spring through to summer and has enormous clusters of up to 15 flowers on each. This looks like one of the boldest and tropical plants that you can find. The leaves and the flowers are both incredibly striking on the flamingo version. They are a beautiful addition to any garden.

There Rosea is also known as the lobster claw because it has sharp points on each of the flowers, and looks similar to a lobster claw. It is an evergreen plant, and each of the claw-like flowers can be 7 cm long and will appear in late spring and early summer.

28. Sophora Microphylla Sun King ‘Hilsop.’

Sophora Microphylla

This is called the Sun King with good reason, and it is very tall and very broad. It produces stunning yellow flowers in light winter and early spring. These flowers drip down with long answers. The leaves are glossy and dark green, and it grows best in full sunshine with well-drained soil.

Also check:

How to Plant a Tree

Types Of Garden Pests


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