Six effects of colour. How does it make you feel?

Colour can actually change your mood. Here's six effects you might notice.

Who would have thought that colour could change the way we think and feel? Why should we even want to bring colour into our lives? Did you know that we have a natural, subliminal reaction to the colours that we see? Colour is all part of a visual language that is processed without consciousness. It can create a mood without anyone being aware of it. Here are six reactions to different colours and colour combinations - providing reasons to become ‘colour smart’ this spring. Cherry blossom, spring, colour, blue, pink, mood, happy, calm Blue sky and pale pink cherry blossom. Uplifting and calming. A beautiful blue sky makes people feel relaxed and peaceful. That’s one reason why we generally love to see bright seaside colours, and indeed, the sea itself. Pastel blue is calming and nurturing. It’s a great colour to have in areas where you want to relax and unwind. Sea, sun, sand, relax, colour, blue, calm, happy Feeling stressed? You need to bathe in the right colours... and atmosphere of course! Yellow is uplifting and tends to create optimism and self-confidence. It is light and welcoming. Who can  dispute that a bunch of daffodils is a cheery sight? Bunch of daffodils, colour, yellow, happy, uplifting, mood Feeling sad? A bunch of cheery daffodils uplifts the spirits. Why? It's all about colour.   The colour red is stimulating. It can create energy and prompts a person to produce adrenaline. Red tends to raise competitiveness and it’s therefore a good idea to avoid using them in places where you want to relax. This strong colour can even make you feel hungry as it creates restless energy – so perhaps keep it out of the kitchen! Red, colour, energy, mood, lively Red means business! It creates energy and causes adrenaline to flow! Colour combinations can have an even greater effect. Green and yellow together, for example, help to create peace, happiness and a feeling of good will. These are the tones of sunshine in spring fields. Green, yellow, colour, field, meadow, calm, peaceful, happy Feeling stressed? You need to visit this green and yellow meadow and you'll soon be calm. Pastel shades are always more relaxing than strong tones. Try an experiment: surround yourself with pastel tones and allow your mind to ‘bathe’ in the colours. Notice how it makes you feel. Then focus on strong colours such as red, blue and purple. Is the atmosphere within your mind different? Pastel, calm, colour, happy, peaceful How do you feel when you look at these pastel colours? Strong colour Strong colours: take a look and you might feel ready for action! Orange is said to be good for depression and it is a good colour to look at in order to promote creativity. And pink helps provide clarity of thought; affection and nurturing. Pink, colour, soft, pastel, nurture The colour pink promotes nurture. This brings us around to summer in the garden. Many people like to adopt colour themes in certain beds. Pastel colours around seating areas would make a good space in which to relax. Hanging baskets, window boxes, pots and containers can be used to great effect as they can help you to provide impact. You can create an atmosphere with your hanging baskets outside the front door, for example. Want to create an energetic entrance? Choose hot colours: bold reds, oranges and yellow.  Hanging basket, flowers, strong colours, spring, colour, plants Strong statement at the front door! Prepared for some controversy? You might mix colours from the opposite sites of the colour wheel. Brilliant purples and bright blues mixed with oranges and yellow. Purple, yellow, colour, flowers, impact, colour wheel, opposite Pick colours from the opposite sites of the colour wheel for strong impact. Or do you prefer the more relaxed and peaceful style of pinks, light blues, lilacs and whites? Even thinking about these colours alters your state of mind. There are few people who could feel stressed in Sissinghurst's white garden, for example. Or Levens Hall in Cumbria, where the pastel borders are famous.    Pastel, tones, garden, flowers, blue, white, pink, relax Now here's a garden that would make you feel relaxed...

How to create a hanging basket arrangement

Creating a hanging basket filled with annual flowers is probably one of the most rewarding tasks you can do this spring. You will enjoy seeing your arrangement develop and grow as the season progresses. Prepare it in April or early May and it will give you colour right through until the first frosts. Examples of plants you can use: A central ‘thriller’ such as a fuchsia, geraniums or Callibrachoa (million bells). Peripheral ‘spillers’ such as Petunia Surfinias, Verbena, Bidens and Bacopa. April 2016 hanging basket flowers and basket example
  • Use the largest basket you can find, and make sure the hanging chains or ropes are sturdy. Soak some water-retaining granules and mix them with good quality, general-purpose compost.
  • Partially fill your hanging basket before placing your plants in position.
  • For a 14” (35cm) basket you probably need one main ‘thriller’ central plant plus four ‘spiller’ plants that will trail.
  • Fill the container with your compost mixture, firming down the plants as you fill.
  • Water it really well and ensure you give it a good soaking at least once per day.
  • Don’t be tempted to leave it outside at night until all danger of frost has passed!
  • Deadhead your annual flowers regularly to ensure your plants keep on flowering all summer long.
  • Give your basket a liquid feed regularly to keep topping up the nutrients within the compost.
  • MOST IMPORTANTLY: enjoy your baskets!
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