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HI there - please excuse any errors - first time on here. I am looking for some inspiration. What can i plant in this border? It is 1m at its' deepest and around 3 / 3.5 m long. Failry sunny spot with well drained soil. Looking for a combination of colour, easy maintenence and something that will look good in winter as well as it is just outside my kitchen window!
Thanks for any help you can offer
Oooh, how exciting!
I'd work out a colour combination that you like first. What about blues, deep rosy pinks and whites?
So, you could have a David Austen rose Mayflower http://www.davidaustinroses.com/american/Showrose.asp?Showr=3940, Blue aquilegias , campanulas and veronicas, blue globe thistles for some height and to attract the bees (and will look wonderful in the winter frost) and possibly an obelisk for a clematis etoile rose - that will flower late into the autumn and give some structure too. Dot some echincacea White Swan about for highlights, and some Verbena bonariensis as well, so that you're looking through them from the window out into the garden.
In the autumn plant some deep rose bedding tulips like these http://www.jparkers.co.uk/plant-1006206-yk-1/tulip-don-quichotte/ (these have strong stems and long lasting flowers) and in the early spring dot some forgetmenot plants amongst them all in the gaps.
You'll have the makings of a perennial border that will look a picture through most of the year, and will really only take a hour or so's maintenance each month at the most - less than that most months.
Did ??ou want to plant up the smaller strip of grass too? Do you want shrubs? Scent? Have you soil tested the area ......to see if you have acid or alkaline soil?
I think I would start off with a choisya there though.....evergreen, rounded, bay scented leaves and white flowers in spring and early summer providing a fantastic scent.....it's common name is Mexican orange blossom. Take a look at aster frikartii monch too......it has blue flowers from mid summer to autumn and is a hardy eye catching perennial to about 3'. Plant a fuschia called Genii next to it....ithas lovely yellow leaves all summer with red flowers all summer. Add penstemons....these are evergreen perennials with flowers from white to pink to red to purple and very easy to grow
Lovely garden but yep, needs some colour. I planted a bed in my front garden of similar size. I went mainly for simple evergreen shrubs all I do is weeding and occasional trimming, very occasional dividing. The bare patches can be left for bedding plants or perennials.
Try euonymous,purple heuchara, hebes, variegated sage, berberis,
Have you thought about grasses and spikes plants? Phormium, uncinia, ophiopogon , carex and festuca.
A standard Salix flamingo would add height and looks great.
Hostas are fab but disappear in winter. pittosporum Tom Thumb is another favourite evergreen.
sorry about all the pics, my gardening is not great but I'm really enjoying taking and sharing photos and find it easier than descriptions , pictures speak a thousand words...
Dove's suggestions are so professional and will be beautiful - I think I'll dig a border out and replant...
I've just planted a choisya on verduns advice and can recommend it highly.
good luck I'm sure it will be lovely and watch out you'll soon have the gardening bug.
(an advert has sprung up in the middle of this -hope it doesn't show when I post this)
I really like that staircase, Mrs garden.
CBuzz, Verd and Dove have probably covered it. Test your soil. No point wasting money on Rhododendrons and azaleas like I did, if you have alkaline soil.
Next doors can grow azaleas but their soil seems to be more acid than mine.
If you want year round colour, make a visit to the garden centre once a month and pick something. I have something in flower every month of the year. I would put low growing flowering plants in the bed at the front,so you can see over it.
If its just in front of the kitchen, you can add some herbs in. Variegated sage is good for cooking as well as nice looking.
I love the salix flamingo. ,got couple of them and think they are under used plants. A similar colouring is on my Acer flamingo.....albeit a much bigger plant in every way. Mine is now,about 5' tall but will easily add another 4' before August and it's such an eye catcher.
Phormiums are great if they are divided every 3 or 4 years but they would look good CBuzz in your border....I like Sundowner and jester for red leaves, tricolour for green, white leaves and yellow wave as best yellow. And....when they flower they are majestic
Thank you so much everyone for all your ideas - I am going to take my time and digest all this information, googling as I go !! I will no doubt be back with questions. You are very kind to spare the time to help - very much appreciated.
Best to plant just a couple of things you are sure of and then plant as time, your knowledge and what does well at certain times of the year attract you. Then you ultimately get plants that flower throughout the year.
Verd -I was thinking about an Acer at the tip of the newly christened 'staircase', about 2-3' in front of bottom right in pic. A foot a year? Wow sounds great as we are trying to block bottom of garden where overlooked. Any advice on varieties?
Fidget - thanks 'staircase' was a very happy result after many words, plans and tears. Oh and blood n sweat from OH.