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Total beginner - new house - help! (Photo)

(28 Posts)
museumum Mon 10-Aug-15 21:42:32

This is the southern edge of our new house garden. A beech hedge. The last 1.5-2m strip of sloping rockery is obviously in the shadow of the hedge a lot and quite bare of plants.
Any suggestions for what I could put there? (We're in Scotland so hardy please - and I love alpines but need something with decent cover not too dainty).

museumum Mon 10-Aug-15 21:43:44

Ps. This was before I weeded. What you see is grass and some kind of willowherb which I've pulled out now.

Ferguson Mon 10-Aug-15 23:11:27

Is it your hedge? And if it is, does it have to be so tall?

(Late now, but I'll come back in a day or two.)

museumum Tue 11-Aug-15 07:19:29

Is next doors. But due to the slope of the gardens tall is necessary for privacy really.

shovetheholly Tue 11-Aug-15 08:03:48

Ooooh, it's lovely! You can make something spectacular out of that slope. There will be loads of hardy things you can grow - the challenge may be to get it planted in a way that gives you all-year interest. It looks to me like you have quite a few nice plants in there already - do you know what they are?

Before I make loads of suggestions that won't work - what's your soil like, and how much light does that slope get during the day?

Finally, before you do anything I would add loads and loads of organic matter to the soil.

museumum Tue 11-Aug-15 11:06:09

Not got a clue what anything is. Sorry.

Soil seems ok. Easy enough to weed. No extremes - not particularly clay or sandy. But I don't know the ph. It's been there around 60 years according to next door neighbours who have similar slope.

museumum Tue 11-Aug-15 11:08:28

That right hand side of the slope doesn't get much sun really. The left hand part (not photographed, the whole slope is twice the width in the photo) is sunny.

StaceyAndTracey Tue 11-Aug-15 13:02:06

Sorry , alpines like lots of sun . You need plants that like dry shade for the bit nearer the hedge . Shrubs and perennials . Google and see which ones you fancy - there won't be a huge choice

There's a thread on shade plants but they are nearly all for damp shade .

Don't worry too much about hardiness - it's the winter wet in scotland that kills most things , not the frost . You have dry and shelter . Are you in the central belt ? Not Aberdeen or Inverness ? . So anything that's sold as hardly in the UK will suit you

museumum Tue 11-Aug-15 14:37:13

Thanks. Will google dry shade plants. I just mentioned the alpine a cause that's what's on the other (sunny) side and I need the two sides to not look silly together despite the different sun conditions.

Will bulbs flower? I would love some snowdrops.

StaceyAndTracey Tue 11-Aug-15 19:47:04

Snowdrops are happy under shrubs and small trees . As are lots of other spring bulbs like crocus . Not right under the hedge of course .

Most bulbs need good drainage , which I assume you have . And this is the perfect time to be planning your bulb order

Can we get a close up of the alpine plants you have ? And please tell us your soil type ? Sandy ? Clay ? Do you know if it's neutral / acid / alkaline . What plants grown well in your neighbours gardens ? I know it's hard if it's a new estate .

StaceyAndTracey Tue 11-Aug-15 21:11:58

Sorry I see you already said your soil texture

bowsaw Wed 12-Aug-15 11:16:57

bamboo in pots at the top to make a screen that will hide you from them up there and will do out in winter winds

if the soils free draining and south facing either alpines or meditoranian, low maintenance since its a steep climb and attractive

shovetheholly Wed 12-Aug-15 16:59:52

I will try to get around to dry shade plants in the near future!! grin It's something I know less about because most of my garden is heavy clay, so damp shade, but I do have areas under hedges that I desperately need to fill. So will good for me to do some research!!

StaceyAndTracey Wed 12-Aug-15 17:06:12

I want to know what climbers you are going to plant up that fence . I know you didn't ask about this but I still want to know grin

museumum Thu 13-Aug-15 10:26:08

Should I? It's still my garden beyond the fence - it's a grassy but with slide and swing, ds is only 2 so fence and gate are great!

museumum Thu 13-Aug-15 10:28:03

Here's a pic from our upstairs window of the whole thing.

museumum Thu 13-Aug-15 10:28:44

Although that pic then doesn't show our decking in the foreground.

bowsaw Thu 13-Aug-15 11:25:06

make the most of the slope if you have a small person, slides angled climbing surface with a rope etc,

than have the traditional garden/dining on the flatter locations

There are plenty of cleaver child friendly ways people make the most of their site on pintrest

museumum Thu 13-Aug-15 11:40:40

I didn't think the current planting was so awful I had to pull it all out?
I quite like looking at it from the house and having ds toys all out of view up top.

shovetheholly Thu 13-Aug-15 12:35:58

Ooooh you have loads of lovely space, it's GREAT! I love your idea of having a bit near the house that's for you and looks lovely, and then a play area up top. And I do like your existing planting.

I'd definitely get some climbers on those fences. They'll look so pretty and give you a lovely green backdrop and flowers. It'll make the top part feel like a lovely secret garden too - you could really make something of that gated entranceway. Choose thornless and non-toxic ones, though, if the top is going to be a play area.

bowsaw Thu 13-Aug-15 13:02:40

what have your neighbours tried?

StaceyAndTracey Fri 14-Aug-15 03:25:33

Did someone say you had to pull out your existing planting? I missed that

Thanks for the photo , v. Exciting, lots of potential . Most keen gardeners run out of space in their own plots so like planning other people's! .

I agree that having the safe flat area at the top is ideal for a toddler . Especially with a shed to house the vast amount of hideous plastic garden toys they accumulate so quickly .

I'm a plant person rather than a fence person, so I'd be tempted to stain it and grow climber up it on a flexible trellis , so you can remove them for restaining later . Although we did ours once and it lasted for 10 years until the wind blew it down . And now we've replaced it with a non orange one . I digress.

Or you could plant some shrubs up near it , to disguise a bit while still leaving it clear for maintenance . A mixture of interesting evergreens and deciduous is good .

I'd also be planting some shrubs along the left boundary too , for some privacy . You see, I do prefer plants to people too . Alpine are nice but they are very ...ahem...small

StaceyAndTracey Fri 14-Aug-15 03:39:42

I agree with the Pinterest suggestion . Pin loads of pics you like , don't think about it too much , just pin anything that appeals to you, even if it's completely unrelated to your own garden . Once you have about 100, search through them for themes .

Eg formal or informal planting styles, types of plants, colours, accessories

Personally like a strong structure with LOTS of dense planting , informal style , lots of texture and shape contrast in my planting , limited colour plalette , few accessories, low key hard hard landscaping .

But lots of people might find my style messy , not enough bright colours , not decorative enough, boring hard landscaping , not enough lawn etc .


StaceyAndTracey Fri 14-Aug-15 03:44:36

Forgot to say re bulbs - snowdrops establish best when planted in the green. So not as dry bulbs planted in autumn, but as plants bought in the winter and planted straight away . You can get them online .

Most other spring flowering bulbs are fine planted in the autumn ( September /October , so order soon )

museumum Fri 14-Aug-15 08:54:59

Can I get daffodil and bluebell bulbs in the garden centre now?
And will they sell the snowdrops as plants? And when?

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