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Oxfordshire, United Kingdom Gb

advice on Garryas please! Have dug out a circular bed [about 6ft] on sunny front lawn and need evergreens to fill it. Thinking of a Garrya [James Roof] but have only seen this against a wall, at Rosemoor, is it good freestanding?Have sandy soil but can add 'goodness'. Also thinking of a Choisya, and Daphne Odorum Aureomarginata, and maybe Berberis Darwinii [ not sure how many to plant really, this may well be a shrub or two too far!Please advise as soon as possible, much appreciated.



Garrya's do not need to be grown against a wall, they can indeed be a freestanding plant so go ahead with your plan.

The 6' area will only be enough for 'one' of your shrubs though, each of them will have a spread of 6' when mature - which won't be long !
If you add more than one plant there you'll end up either constantly hacking them back or removing one of them.

12 Apr, 2011


Um, Louise, Garrya may not need to be against a wall in the balmy part of the UK you live in, but in Oxfordshire, it will need to be against a wall. They are only moderately hardy, and that's why they're usually grown against a wall, for extra shelter.
As you've made a circular bed 6 feet across, one focal point in the middle with smaller shrubs/plants (below 3 feet) around the edge will be sufficient, Freeasabird, and the 'focal point' in the middle should be something that remains narrow but gets fairly tall. I wouldn't recommend Berberis darwinii for such a situation - its one of my favourite shrubs, but there's no denying it can be a bit of a tatty grower, and is best either as a hedge or up the back in a border. The Choisya you mention will have a spread sideways of 5 feet, so that would be almost enough to fill the bed you've created on its own.

12 Apr, 2011


I've had a garrya in previous years and it was quite a tender plant even though I had planted it against a wall for protection. It is such a shame when they die because they are really attractive looking plants when all the "tassels" are out.

12 Apr, 2011


thank you all for your answers, so glad I asked, these shrubs are too expensive to make many mistakes!No to the Garrya then, and also the choisya and the berberis. I have to find one tall narrow evergreen focal point, and then look for low growers to surround it, makes sense, I shall get back to the drawing board.

12 Apr, 2011


Ah, yes Bamboo.
Sorry folks, sometimes it's easy to oversee these things.

13 Apr, 2011

How do I say thanks?

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