If you live in a harsher climate zone, or delicate flowers just aren't your thing, consider a rock garden like the Alpine Rock Garden at Betty Ford Gardens in Colorado. Low-ground, native flowers grow easily among the rocks, many staying colorful even in cold weather, creating a rustic, multi-dimensional yet all-natural look.
Details & Ideas: The crevice garden (pictured) is similar to Czechoslovakian gardens, in which rocks are upended to form vertical crevices for plants to grow in between. Species in the Alpine Garden: Asperula pontica sprawls next to Lewisia tweedyi. Draba polytricha, D. rigida and D. bryoides dot the garden among 20 Campanula flower varieties. White, hairy-leafed Calceolaria arachnoidea hail from the Andes, and purple pocket flowers grow with Calceolaria hypericina, Oxalis exigua and Loasa filicifolia. Alpines in the rock garden peak in June, blooming next to Gentaina verna. They are followed by penstemons in mid-summer and then Campanula.