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COLOR TRENDS FOR 2008: SHADES OF NATURE

Colors inspired by nature are very popular this year.
According to the Cone Environmental Report, 88% of consumers are as or more interested in the environment today than they were just one year ago. Everywhere you look, people are talking about environmental issues like global warming, biofuels, and organic food. Celebrities and politicians have joined the awareness campaign, showing younger generations that it's cool to be environmentally responsible. Is this just a trend? Research confirms that concern and heightened awareness for the environment has become mainstream; it's here to stay.
What does environmentalism have to do with the color trends for 2008? Everything. Designers of everything from celebrity evening gowns to patio furniture are picking up on the eco-trends and responding by producing textiles in tones pulled straight from nature: earthy green, ocean blue, yellow-green, deep iris blue, natural linen, and chocolate brown.
The Pantone Color Institute® has chosen Blue Iris for the 2008 color of the year. "It brings together the dependable aspect of blue underscored by a strong, soul-searching purple cast," according to Leatrice Eiseman, Executive Director of PCI. However, the Director of The Color Association, Margret Walsh, has other ideas. She says their color of the year is Bamboo, "a strong green hinted with yellow which represents the changing social desire to be more environmentally clean." Fashion designers are favoring shades of blue as well as natural rock and soil colors this year. In short, the trend for 2008 is to look "green", no matter what colors you're using. Pulling colors straight from nature is the way to do it.
How will these 2008 color trends play out in the home landscape? Imagine an intimate, serene shade garden filled with green Hostas and ferns, yellow-green Heucheras, and deep blue Siberian Irises. Lounge chairs with fluffy ivory linen cushions beckon you over for a nap on your cool slate patio. A bubbling water feature lulls you into dreamland.
This is how today's gardener connects with their landscape. One half of all consumers use their garden for relaxation or as a spiritual retreat according to the Garden Media Group. They want a safe, private space to enjoy the outdoors and reconnect with the earth on their own time. Can we, the original "Green Industry", help them accomplish this? Be ready to meet their demands this spring with a full stock of earthy green, ocean blue, deep iris blue, natural linen, and chocolate brown perennials.