Posted: 09/11/2013 at 09:51
Verdun has just written the next bit I was going to say! It was getting late last night and I didn't want to write too much at once.
Knowing your soil is important, some plants, such as azaleas, like acid soil, others prefer alkaline. Some hate clay (clay can be improved with compost) and some hate light and sandy. You are lucky if you have loam. Same applies for sun or shade. Sun and shade can be interesting to plan, woodland type plants for shade, colourful flowers in sun. Gives your garden character. You can create shade by planting trees or use one side of the fence, but trees give dappled shade. The fence will give solid shade but may be sunny in morning or afternoon.
Make sure you remove the bramble roots. They can be a real nuisance when they grow up in the middle of a shrub. But sometimes I think that is because a bird has sat in the shrub and dropped or pooed the seeds. Also ivy can be a nuisance when it grows up your fence where you didn't want it. But ivy in the right place is lovely for the birds.
You may already know all that, but it can be more complicated than one thinks planning a new garden! But it's fun.