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Garden/Plant shopping : I have a budget of £1000

(10 Posts)
Eyelet Sat 29-Mar-14 19:33:52

Anyone willing to help me spend it? DH has new job and so we've agreed that we can spend some money.

So far I've bought a fence (£150), materials for raised beds (£130) and some corkscrew willow hedging (£30) as well as two arches to divide up the lawns.

I'd like a greenhouse 8*6 and the two dc need a playhouse of some kind and a slide or swing. Fruit cage can wait until next year.

Then there's the planting. Two years ago we planted a selection of trees (weeping crab apple, cotoneaster, wisteria, honeysuckle) and we have a pear, eating and dessert apple, cherry trees.

so. Garden is south facing and has

Courtyard <- have lots of lovely pots but they're empty
Formal lawn with borders <- planted a few bulbs but mostly empty, I'd like to have a bright vibrant showy display all year round
wildlife lawn <- this has a mature beech in it, a lilac and a shrubbery but intending to plant for bees
muddy horrid area I'd like to sort out for the dc <- unsure of best ground cover or planting, the play equipment will be here and its quite shaded - neighbours hedge on one side - possibly rhododendron?
vegetable area <- tidy raised beds with trellis fencing around with greenhouse/compost bins

I quite fancy a passion flower in the courtyard but the soil is poor near the house unfortunately.

I don't know where best to buy from, most things so far have come from garden centres or GW offers!

afriendcalledfive Sun 30-Mar-14 10:15:52

Hi op, do you live in the UK?

Try the cpa horticulture website for the childrens play area surface, they have good ideas. I only came across the website when looking for something else. See what you think.

peggyundercrackers Sun 30-Mar-14 23:15:02

If you are buying a lot of shrubs/flowers have a look at www.dutchbulbs.co.uk, they are a wholesale site but will sell to the public if you are buying lots of plants at one time and the discounts can be quite a lot.

Eyelet Mon 31-Mar-14 00:45:37

Brilliant, thank you both.

The greenhouse has been chosen and ordering tomorrow (300) and I'm also ordering a ton of pea shingle to put between the raised beds.

We've also decided not to buy another childrens playhouse just yet, they'll both enjoy a slide and swing more for now. As well as a sandpit.

What a lovely problem to have!

make sure your greenhouse has high shoulders - high enough for tomatoes. Mine is only about 4' at the eaves and it's not tall enough, the tomatoes near the glass have to bend over to come up the slope of the roof too soon. And get automatic vents for the roof and pay someone to assemble it for you!

whereisshe Mon 31-Mar-14 09:40:24

Sounds like a lovely problem to have smile

Wildflower lawns take a bit of prep - you should hoe the existing weeds back in for a few months (well ideally a year) to make sure they're dead and won't choke the wildflowers. Seed mats are the easiest way to plant them.

The boggy area might be helped by planting drought-resistant grass. It has deeper roots and draws the water deeper into the soil. A thirsty tree like a eucalypt could help too.

Was going to suggest J Parker Dutch bulbs as well, they're great for plug plants (although you might need to bring them on in the greenhouse before planting - I've had lots of plug plant death from planting out too early!)

For the year round borders, you might want to do a small test run in the first year with annuals while you focus on improving the soil. My previous garden had a weird microclimate where everything came up 2-4 weeks later than the rest of the neighbourhood, which affected my plant planning.

Have fun, I'm jealous!

SylvaniansKeepGettingHoovered Mon 31-Mar-14 10:49:35

How nice! Don't forget to take some photos of 'before and after' as you'll soon forget how it used to look. Clematis or climbing rose for the arches dividing the lawns would be lovely, maybe some winter jasmine along the trellis.

Do you have anywhere for herbs? Rosemary and lavender look pretty and are useful to have.

I found with my DC they like to have a selection of smaller toys and space to run about instead of slide or playhouse, so we got rid of the playhouse in the end. We have a toy box in the garage which contains skipping ropes/bats and balls/skittles/hoops/watering cans/toy wheelbarrow, instead of a playhouse type thing. They get v excited when I bring out the 'outdoor toy box'!

Eyelet Tue 01-Apr-14 21:06:55

Thanks everyone, fence has hit a hurdle - there is apparently a national fencing shortage! So two week lead time on having that delivered.

Will investigate the bulbs site again after I've got the greenhouse all set up so I can give them a better chance. Also building some cold frames.

Will take on board the outdoor play box, older dd likes to just run about rather than make tea in a playhouse. The old one is not safe so I may make them a wigwam to hide in. Theres a cement platform under the playhouse which we'll leave for now.

I planted up a small herb garden last summer - about the only thing I did last year apart from the fruit trees. This is a definite test run year in terms of the bedding, the old owners decided they liked some very invasive weeds and it will be a while before we have them under control.

I was wondering in the courtyard about creating a pot and vertical edible garden? Has anyone tried that? Its the section of garden surrounded mostly by house, where the dc play so at least if all the planting is edible they can help pick salad, tumbling tomatoes, blueberries or strawberries?

Geoff0409 Wed 02-Apr-14 15:16:31

Hi Eyelet.

Lovely, lovely, lovely to have a nice budget for your Garden. And congratulations to your husband on his new job.

For your fencing I would say order from a local fencing supplier - we needed a couple of new panels last year and not only where they a very good price, the quality is excellent compared to a more general/DIY place.

As for a playhouse - go and have a look in Costco, if you've got one close to you (they do online now aswell though). We bought one about 5 years ago now and it is still superb. It is wooden, and the roof is plastic and is a little fadednow but is fantastic quality - it has been outdoors since day 1 and is still as strong as when we first built it. Plus the kids have had a whale of a time in it.

Lots of luck.

Orangeanddemons Wed 02-Apr-14 15:20:07

Garden on a roll are great for the keen amateur

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