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Dear Sirs, I have just bought a house in france on the Vendee coast. My house in the a forest area but garden is entirely made of sand (approx 80m squared). Q1. What material should I put on top of the sand (a mulch ?) to allow me to walk in the garden without dragging the sand into my house. The surrounding forest area seems to have a layer of pine needles which give a firmer footing ? Q2 What low maintenance plants can I grow in this type of terrain, e.g. heathers, grasses ? Your help will be very much appreciated Kind Regards Colin



You could consider putting a weed suppressant membrane down and putting a 4" bark mulch or a gravel mulch on top. The membrane would separate the sand from the mulch which may need raking once or twice a year. I have both in my garden and both look and behave well. If you have a lots of leaf drop than the bark mulch may look better all year.

25 Jul, 2011


As to plants you may need to look at maritime ones... Heathers will not appreciate growing in sand though many grasses will.

25 Jul, 2011


A few things that come to my mind:
Hardy Iceplants (Delosperma species), Sedums, Sempervivums, Thymes, some of the ornamental Oreganoes, some Dianthus, Rugosa Roses, Burnet (Sanguisorba species), & Moss Campion (Phlox subulata).

25 Jul, 2011


I'd have a look at lists of wild flowers, by their common names - and go for the ones that have the word "sea" at the front. Sea holly (Eryngium) & sea lavender (Statice) for example.

Whatever you do, your house is going to have lots of sand and pine needles on the floors, you'll have to get used to it. They'll blow in.

26 Jul, 2011

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