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looking for ideas for a border

United Kingdom Gb

i \hve recently started looking after the garden of an elderly neighbour. This is fun for us both. I am looking for ideas to brighten up a small patch (6ft x 3 ft) in front of the house wall - the house sits on a south facing slope, but the front wall faces north, so does not always get a lot of light or moisture. I'm looking for plants that would grow to3 ft or so? many thanks in anticipation



Locally there is a mill with a fabulous garden. To the front of the house is a small border, no bigger than you describe, absolutely bursting with colour. It is infront of a brick wall, roadside and I often take a detour just so I can see how it is looking. He uses tall plants, many are in containers and he moves them in and out as they do their thing. So, containers is one idea and the choice is pretty limitless. Choose some white to brighten up what otherwise might be a darkish spot, and lilac too which glows in gloomy conditions. For any plants that will go in the ground, it is essential that you improve the soil with plenty of compost; I use the council green waste, which comes in bags from the tip. Then google plants for part shade, which can tolerate slightly dry conditions, make your choices and anything you plant in the ground, mulch well. Good luck! Some plants I would look at are:- hardy geraniums 'Rozanne' is a very long flowering blue one with a white eye, fuchsias, hardy and tender (in pots), ferms (those which tolerate drier conditions), and alliums.

3 Aug, 2009


If you want something colourful,the pot idea is probably best; its a small area and you can move the pots out and replace when whatever's in them fades.
Alternatively, you could just fill the space up with something like Mahonia aquifolium - evergreen shrub, yellow mimosa like flowers early in the year, tolerates shade and dry pretty well, gets 3 feet high, up to five feet wide, eventually and underplant/surround with bulbs and perhaps something like a fuchsia for late summer colour,if there's room.

5 Aug, 2009


thank you for your suggestions - much appreciated!

10 Aug, 2009

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