What to grow in a rose garden besides roses?

(23 Posts)
CruCru Mon 30-Mar-15 17:19:17

I've just planted eight roses in a little rose garden. What should I grow alongside them? At the moment they are a bunch of stalks in bare soil so I could use something to accompany the roses.

I love white foxgloves but they are very poisonous and I have small kids. What about some upright Rosemary?

SunnySomer Mon 30-Mar-15 17:21:15

Lavender is supposed to keep aphids at bay, it is also easier to keep under control than rosemary.

TheWintersmith Mon 30-Mar-15 17:27:30

Came on to say lavender too.

Made for eachother, lavender and roses are

penny13610 Mon 30-Mar-15 17:33:17

I have my roses under planted with marjoram and oregano. It has been working well for the last 15 years. Random other plants make guest appearances.

CruCru Mon 30-Mar-15 17:45:15

Ah that's a good idea, thanks! Does lavender like the same conditions as roses?

florentina1 Mon 30-Mar-15 19:37:48

Gysophila for me because I love it in a vase with cut roses .

Problem with planting lavender is that roses thrive in well watered rich soil. Lavender likes light soil and dry conditions.

CruCru Mon 30-Mar-15 20:53:59

Well, I've had to dig in about 200 litres of compost as the soil was so tired. So I could possibly plant the lavender in the bits away from the piles of compost.

Bit random but I've had a look at French lavender (the stuff with the ears). It is semi hardy and we have no greenhouse. We live in the Isle of Wight so hardly ever have a frost. Do you think it would survive?

MyNightWithMaud Mon 30-Mar-15 22:02:33

Roses like clay soil. Lavender hates clay soil. The combination looks beautiful in magazines but is doomed. ::bitter experience::

Perovskia and nepeta have a similar sort of look but may be more likely to thrive. Or how about underplanting with hardy geraniums?

AuntieStella Mon 30-Mar-15 22:06:31

Classic/safe choice would be lady's mantle alchemilla mollis

MyNightWithMaud Mon 30-Mar-15 22:13:56

Ooh, yes. Alchemilla mollis.

EnriqueTheRingBearingLizard Mon 30-Mar-15 22:15:16

I have heavy clay soil and roses and lavender and rosemary that's grown up to chest height, all in the same bed. Go figure.

My roses are shades of pink and are underplanted with golden thyme, oregano and chives, the onion smell works like garlic to be a natural deterrent to aphids, supposedly anyway, Johnson's Blue geranium (Cranesbill) and Convolvulus Cneorum. I've also got some lovely big blue Delphiniums in that bed and Cistus both white and pink, which is good value and evergreen.

CruCru Mon 30-Mar-15 22:50:35

Well, I have heavy clay everywhere in the garden - except this bed. I got some guys in to clear it (it was massively overgrown) and the soil left was this thin, sandy stuff. It looks as though it's just really tired so I've ploughed in a load of compost.

All good ideas - thanks!

mrsgoon Mon 30-Mar-15 22:53:36

I have rose beds surrounded by a low lavender hedge. Both are thriving in a very windy exposed area. Soil is rich soil/compost, on top of clay.

I mulch the beds with compost every year - and the lavender is very happy. I would recommend that you put in a very free draining and sunny area, though - I think lavender will tolerate most things except being waterlogged!

Underplanted with heuchera, hardy geraniums and lots of salvias & penstemons. Tulips & alliums in spring/ early summer & veronica and sweet peas to add a bit of height.

CruCru Thu 02-Apr-15 13:16:47

Would mint work or would it totally take over?

HumphreyCobbler Thu 02-Apr-15 13:20:18

I have Six Hills Giant Catmint/nepeta under our rose walk. It is hardy, easy to propagate, has a lovely habit, you can cut it back two or three times and get new growth and flowers. Much easier than lavender if your conditions are not exactly right.

bilbodog Thu 02-Apr-15 17:01:37

ive seen sage growing with roses as well - my favourite is alchemilla mollis because it is lovely picked with the roses and put in jugs in the house.

CruCru Thu 02-Apr-15 18:05:59

I love nepeta but already have quite a lot of it. I've found Calamintha Nepeta (blue / white cloud) really hard to get hold of.

CruCru Thu 02-Apr-15 21:50:26

Okay I've ordered some Rosemary, lavender, lady's mantle, yarrow, salvia, sage, thyme and heuchera. Thanks all for your help.

CruCru Sun 10-May-15 18:42:11

Hi all

I know I'm resurrecting an older thread but here's a picture of my rose garden so far.

SugarPlumTree Sun 10-May-15 20:49:10

That is going to be lovely in the summer CruCru smile

CruCru Sun 10-May-15 21:08:35

Thanks! I'm very excited. The lavender has bracts already (but hasn't flowered).

SugarPlumTree Sun 10-May-15 21:10:03

Would love to sed a photo in a few months time .

CruCru Mon 11-May-15 16:00:52

Will do! Not convinced the roses will flower this year, they were planted this spring.

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