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Planning Ahead


By Maple

Aude, France Fr

I know you guys will be great on this one!! Moving house within the next 18 months and for the first time won't have a garden that I can really plant up due to bedrock (oh the joy of mountain living!!!).
So it will be a terrace garden.
Recommend some plants for container planting please with country of origin where possible as I have a cunning plan!!



well Maple, one of my favorites for container growing would have to be the Acer - but then i gues you already have some plans for some of them lol. but as you will proberly know they do need shelter from wind so if you are on a mountain you would need lots of protection, i did see an eppisode of ground force once where they did a really nice garden which was in a sea side location on cliffs, and they did use some small acers. they made a nice design of rail way sleepers zig-zagging through the garden to act as a wind breaker. it looked really effective. bamoo is also one that does well in pots and looks quite effective with wind rusting through! - so what is your cunning plan?

9 Jan, 2008


Just off the top of my head:
Hakenochola macra 'Aureola' (Japan) - evergreen variegated grass that absolutely loves pot life
Heucheras (USA) - lots of different foliage colours and many are evergreen (look under my pictures as I've got six in pots on my patio)
Sedum spectabile (China) - drought resistant
Phormiums (New Zealand) - I've got 'Platt's Black' (a dwarf variety)growing happily in pots
Pennisteum setaceum 'Rubrum' (Asia?) - this grass is not hardy so I pot it up and bring indoors for the winter; I see no reason why it shouldn't grow quite happily in a pot all year round

9 Jan, 2008


Thanks for the suggestions guys. Will go and look them up but they sound great.
The reason for the country of origin is I though of doing a world themed garden - by continent (or country if it has plants specifically identified with it). What do you think?
The idea I am sad to say is not mine but came from the Garden for the World (Jardin pour la Terre) in the Auvergne, France.
This gives you a great aerial photo of it. So I thought same idea, smaller scale (much smaller scale!!!)

9 Jan, 2008


Ginger lillies - Hedychium, if where you are going to live is hotter than the UK then you can choose from many varieties. I have a picture of Hedychium Tara on my profile. Tropical SE Asia

If you do want to plant in the rocks, then you can use lampranthus, this comes in pink, red, orange, yellow and cream, it will grow in rubbish soil, it prefers it and will trail over rocks like a cascade. The flowes look like mesembrianthemums and it is well worth a place in any garden - think this originates from Africa

If you want any climbers, there are many vines which you can grow in pots. This year I planted an Orange Clock Vine which originates from S. Africa, it flowers for months and you can take cuttings and seeds to propogate. I have a piccy of it on my profile.

I have a few trees in pots, they will do fine but the roots will be restriced so they won't take over.

10 Jan, 2008


i think it is a great idea Maple, and picking up on what Andrea has said, about plants that do actually like these conditions, you could include a rockery of some sort, there are loads of apline plants to choose from that would thrive in mountain areas and love to creep and cascade over rocks, all climates too, so the scope is endless! i am not an expert on these type of plants but i do know of an excellent supplier of them on ebay - i bet he would also be able to give you some advice - let me know if want his details. i look forward to seeing what you come up with!

10 Jan, 2008


Andrewr suggests Heucheras and Sedums ,be wary of the dreaded Vine Weevil they love those plants especially in tubs or pots.Most grasses love pots, and of course you can always have annuals. Fuchsias also do well in pots and tubs but again Vine Weevils adore them.

11 Jan, 2008


Some more excellent ideas there. Thank you and a timely reminder from Wyeboy on the dreaded pests! . I always forget about them!!
Keep them coming folks as I'm doing the virtual plan as your ideas spark my inspiration for schemes!

12 Jan, 2008


Do you remember my Coprosmas - I have three different ones now, growing them for their beautiful foliage. They apparently come from Australia or New Zealand. I know you said you liked at least one of them. They might not be hardy enough for your new garden, you haven't told us about the possible I don't know if you'll get frost/snow/wind/lots of sun????

12 Jan, 2008


It was Evening Glow that I liked Spritz and you are right I didn't mention weather ranges!
OK here goes -:
Spring wet and warm -: Temp 0°C - 20°C (extremes)
wind always some up to 80mph

Summer hot and dry -: Temp 20°C - 40°C
hot wind sometimes sandy

Autumn warm and dry -: Temp 10°C - 25°C
mixed winds mainly cold northerly

Winter cold and damp -: Temp -18°C - 15°C
Cold northerly mainly

Snow occasionally for around 3 days, hard frosts but they rarely last all day.

These are rough estimates for the area but are known since we've been here.

13 Jan, 2008


It sounds as if wind is going to be your main problem, not only shredding large leaves but dehydrating everything. As well as drought tolerant things, I suggest you look at what will grow in maritime gardens as that can stand any amount of wind (and salt spray too).
Small leaves would cope better with wind than large ones - heathers, thrift, pinks, lavender, dwarf hebes, small geraniums, etc

13 Jan, 2008


I didn't think of maritime planting - brilliant idea! I knew I liked you guys for a reason! :o )
Wind is a major factor! Our main winds all have names they are so intrusive in your life. Also the majority of gardeners here are vegetable gardeners and ornamental is a newish concept (unless you are a Brit or a chateau owner!!) so less factoring in of weather is needed.
Keep the ideas coming and thank you all again

13 Jan, 2008


What about Leptospermum? They are from Australia/ New Zealand too I think, so should be OK in hot temps and cool. Also have small leave, as Andrew says. I think would need winter protection, though.

16 Jan, 2008


Hi Maple, I missed this question when you first posted it. What a fascinating idea. Firstly, I thought of your new location "up in the clouds" and thought of crocosmia"nimbus", which would lead to S. Africa as a possible country (you are a fountain of wisdom in that area, Andrearichter). Then, I was thinking about the wind. Perhaps you could google up some plants with variety names of the names of the winds in your area, or your chosen country/countries. In general, I was thinking about "sirocco", "mistral", "zephyr" etc. This led me to thinking Greek and wondered if you might consider looking to that mountainous country for plant ideas, or to include it in your "map". This then got me thinking about food. When anyone mentions a country to me, the first thing I think of is the food of that country (cooking being my other passion). You could maybe grow edibles, eg. herbs, of your chosen destinations in pots (and eat them, too). You should know better than to get me started on themes.Keep us posted.

30 Jan, 2008

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