Here are a couple of views of Giant Kale planted with Burgundy Pincushion Flower (Knautia macedonica, formerly called scabiosa) growing in the idea garden at Cantigny Park. I love the masses of small, intense flowers around the solid sculptural forms of the kale, and the contrast of the burgundy and silver. I think you could also get this effect with Agave and Geum – I’m going to try that combination in my own garden.
See-through plants add movement and depth. Put these in the front or the middle of your bed or border. You want to keep this look simple so that it’s naturalistic, not cluttered, so stick to one type of plant. These look better in groups, or drifts (if you really have some space) rather than dotted around. Here are a few suggestions:
Kangaroo Paw (Anigozanthus)
Red hot poker (Kniphofia uvaria)
Scabious (Knautia macedonica)