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New Border in my garden

33 comments


This blog continues from my earlier blog where I talked about beginning a new mixed herbaceous perennials and shrub border

Last autumn I cleared out an old ,badly weed infested plant border with the intention of planting it up in the spring .

On March 28th 2011 I hoed the whole border and planted up .

There were no perennials at all in the border or around the pond and just the golden sambuccus, common elderberry and a couple of other small trees near the back of the border.

I wanted to see what could be achieved in one season on a very low budget,using only common easy to look after plants.

Overall I planted about 60 plants( 20 or so off shot to the left where the crescent extends for another 15 feet or so.) The crescent you can see is about 40 feet long and 12 feet wide at its widest.

All the plants were grown on my nursery so cost me about £8. similar sized plants could be bought for roughly £100- £150 depending on where in the UK you live and whether they’re bought at a market stall or garden centre .

This is a very big border (60 feet by 12 feet at it’s widest so obviously it would be much cheaper to stock an average small garden border)

Virtually all the plants are evergreen and spreading so within a year or two there won’t be much soil showing so this will be a very easy border to look after. Requiring (in my light soil) 5 minutes hoeing work a week during the growing season and about 1-2 hours cutting back time in the off season.

Here’s the border 8 weeks later on 30th May.

The plants used here include Golden marjoram,achillea,rudbeckia,ornamental grasses,tradescantia,diantus,lupin,thymes,crocosmia,geranium,osteospermum and japanese anenome

and here it is on 6th August

I’m very pleased with the initial results and I’m surprised just how quickly the border has developed a mature look.

This was all a bit of a rush job and I only used plants available on my nursery. Over the years I shall add more varieties of plants.

More blog posts by anchorman

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Next post: A visit to a local iris nursery on 2nd June 2012



Comments

bjs
Bjs
 

That is very impressive what direction does the border face my guess would be S/W,well done you.

9 Aug, 2011

 

Yes roughly south west

9 Aug, 2011

 

That looks amazing Anchorman:)

9 Aug, 2011

 

Well done Anchorman - looking good!

9 Aug, 2011

 

How wonderful that such a new border looks like it's at least 2 seasons old. You must be very pleased.

9 Aug, 2011

 

Isn't it terrific the way that grew up...awesome! Beautiful job, Anchorman!

9 Aug, 2011

 

Excellent, you must be very pleased with that.

9 Aug, 2011

 

Incredible!

9 Aug, 2011

 

Well done. I was wondering how it was going. In spite of all the rain or maybe drought in your case the plants seem to be overcoming every obstacle and doing us proud. You have created a lovely palette of colour and texture. Congratulations on finding new customers to replace the ones who dropped out.

9 Aug, 2011

 

That's lovely, I'm amazed at how quickly it has matured. You did really well supplying it yourself.

9 Aug, 2011

 

Yes we had a 10-11 week drought so I did LOTS of watering. Although I've planted quite a fewe new borders in my time this one seems to have established more rapidly than I believed possible.

Thanks everyone for your kind comments :^)

9 Aug, 2011

 

What a great result, Am, positively inspiring!

9 Aug, 2011

 

That has come on so well Anchorman, I am really impressed even more so as you say it had to contend with the drought in its early stages, any gardener would be pleased with a result like that...

9 Aug, 2011

 

You are at a great disadvantage with that field behind you Anchorman. Have you put down some sort of barrier to stop invading weeds. The tree there do give you privacy and added height and shelter but it is very hard to keep out weeds in that situation. How do you cope?

10 Aug, 2011

 

Inspirational to us all, what a difference.

10 Aug, 2011

 

It all looks fabulous. Hard to believe it's so new. Well done.

10 Aug, 2011

 

The weeds coming from the field is a problem but I have a very light soil so hoeing is easy. I do a great deal of hoeing in my job and can hoe this whole border in less than 10 minutes.

Usually I just carry a hoe when I go to look at it and a few stabbing hoes a week keeps the weed at bay.

My main problem is that one of the weeds is horsetail/mares tail and that really is very difficult to eradicate. All other weeds will die with regular hoeing. Marestail won't!

The only weedkiller that works is Kibosh which is very expensive and available only via the internet.( Google Kibosh weed killer)

This border was very heavily infested with marestail last year. I've used kibosh and now it is under control but not entirely as some of it is amongst the plants and I can use the weed killer on it there

10 Aug, 2011

 

Have added to favourites to give me inspiration! Amazing how quickly you got this result.

10 Aug, 2011

 

Good idea Frybo . . . I've now done the same. The list of plants will come in useful!

10 Aug, 2011

 

your garden really filled out well, looks really good

10 Aug, 2011

 

Ooh. I know what you mean about mares tail. My garden was infested with the damned stuff when we moved here. I got rid of most of mine through true grit and determination - digging down about a meter to get most of the large root out. As the years have gone by, I find occasional bits coming through but rub Round Up onto it after I've squished it a bit and that seems to work. (I always protect the surrounding plants even doing it this way).

11 Aug, 2011

 

I need to learn to use my hoe. Is there a secret like keeping it sharp or something. I have lots of convolvulus this year something we have not had in the past and chickweed which we managed to get rid of when the sparrowhawk chased off the sparrows in the garden a few years ago. They have come back and so has the chickweed. I have not seen marestail here but I do look out for it if I buy plants from sales of work etc.

11 Aug, 2011

 

It's very impressive - well done you! I was pleased to hear that you've got new customers, too. :-)

11 Aug, 2011

 

Thanks Spritz and everyone else for your nice comments

Scotsgran..... I've recommended dutch hoes to a number of people and taught them how to use them.

Most people seem to use them incorrectly until shown how.

The main problem is they dig the hoe end into the ground at too steep an angle.

Try hoeing at about 30 -35 degrees from the horizontal. Aim to go down not much more than an inch and slide the head through the ground almost horizontally rather than digging in .

They key is to hoe ground weekly so it doesn't set hard between hoeing.

Admittedly I live in a light loam soil area but I could hoe most of my gardens holding the hoe between finger and thumb if I wanted to. It shouldn't be hard work at all after you've broken the soil up initially.

If the weeds are long enough that they don't just disappear into the ground as you hoe then you're leaving it too long between hoeing.

When I go out to look at my garden I often carry a hoe with me and the odd individual weed can be chopped off as I go.

Get as light weight a hoe as possible with an aluminium handle and fine cutting blade.

I never sharpen my hoe as it stays lovely and shiny with constant use in my customer's gardens.

Contrary to popular opinion almost all weeds including dandylions , ground elder and bind weed will die if you hoe every week. The key is to hoe ground that appears not to have any weeds in it to a depth of half an inch to an inch every week. That way any perennial weeds which are just below the surface are chopped off before they can get any light and they will give up the ghost soon enough.

11 Aug, 2011

 

Thank you for the explanation. I think maybe I plant a bit close to allow me to hoe some of it but I have mostly shrub borders with lots of bulbs under ground. I chose not to have herbaceous borders because the shrubs needed less attention but because of a change to the environment in my garden because of a new building I now feel that herbaceous perennials have more chance of surviving. I will space them better to allow me to hoe when I plant up the next lot. I will also need to look for a new hoe as the one I have is heavy and has quite a thick blunt blade.

11 Aug, 2011

 

You can buy narrow headed hoes for more fiddly bits.

Also buy the best quality hioe you can afford. Most of the ones I've seen lately in DIY sheds are far too heavy and the blades are thick making easy hoeing impossible.

The best hoe I ever owned was about 50 years old and belonged to my grand father who was a keen gardener. The hoe cutting edge was very fine and slid beautifully through the soil.

i've been researchinh hoes this last week as the hoe i'm using won't last much longer. I use it so much the blade has almost completely worn away.

The trouble is the best quality hoes cost about £25-30

I think it will be possible to get a good one for less than that if a shop around. I think my current one cost £14 3-4 years ago.

11 Aug, 2011

 

Yes my one came from a DIY store. Before that I was using an inherited one made by my OHs grandfather who was head blacksmith at Hopetoun House. It was probably made in the late 1800's and passed to us via an uncle. It too wore away. I might find one in a car boot sale I have seen them. I have also seen them in antique shops at twice the price of a new one. I'll have a look around. A narrow blade would be a better buy. I have seen handles with interchangeable heads I will look at those too.

11 Aug, 2011

 

I've just looked on ebay at " dutch hoe" and there are some very nice quality models there .

11 Aug, 2011

 

Yes i've seen them in the past at car boots. I wish I could see one again soon.

I'll let you know if I find a decent quality hoe at a good price

11 Aug, 2011

 

There is a shop near me Kens Yard in Grangemouth. They seem to do a good selection but it is difficult to know which to buy because prices are not necessarily an indication of quality.

11 Aug, 2011

 

The key is that it must be very light weight and the blade should be strong and thin.

Most of the cheap ones I see have heavy handles and thick blades.

I've just meaured the thickness of the blade on my hoe and it is a fraction over 1mm. The cheap blades are 2 to 3 times thicker.

11 Aug, 2011

 

Thank you it was not possible to get that information from looking at photographs.

12 Aug, 2011

 

All of the tips you gave us are very helpful. I have several kinds of hoes here in Vermont. The "carrot hoe" is my favorite. It is small, but no bending over and gets the little devils very quickly! I love the border, am actually doing the same myself. I hope mine turns out as well, nothing but shrubbery. Good idea with the pictures.

9 Mar, 2012

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