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Moving plants from the South coast to the North West coast...

(8 Posts)
moomin183 Tue 11-Oct-16 09:47:22

Morning all. My family and I will soon be relocating from the South coast up to a small coastal town up in the North West and I was looking for some advice. I will be leaving behind a large established garden and would like to bring a few plants with me. Are there any green fingered folk up in Cumbria who could advice if the plants I wanted to bring would a) grow well b) overwinter outside ok or would need extra protection/fleece/brought inside. Plants in question are a couple of fig trees. Currently in pots. Have successfully overwintered left outside here in the South. Would they establish ok if planted in the ground or would it be best to keep them in pots? I have a small Rhus Typhina/Stag's Horn Sumach tree. Currently in a pot. Would this establish ok if planted in ground? And last but not least is a small Arbutus Unedo/Strawberry Tree. Growing well in a pot with ericaceous compost. Would this establish ok if planted/overwinter ok?Having spent some time looking through books/RHS/various sites online I am still none the wiser if these plants would establish well/need extra care over winter etc. Could anyone advice? Any help much appreciated!

shovetheholly Tue 11-Oct-16 10:38:58

Google the plant's name and its hardiness zone (and make sure you are getting readings for the UK not USA).

A lot depends on your individual site - it's not just climate. A sheltered, south-facing garden in Cumbria is very different from a mountainside location! You're really looking at at least three things: exposure, soil, and temperature.

The strawberry tree is the thing I'm most worried about: some varieties of this are pretty tender and they don't like waterlogged soil so heavy clay might be an issue. However, if it's the red-barked variety, it is a bit hardier than the standard A uendo. It's a risk, but I do notice that several Cumbrian garden centres stock strawberry trees, so it may be worth a try if you dig in loads of grit and plant it in the most sheltered spot. I'm all for giving stuff like this a go - sometimes you can read all the books in the world about a plant's hardiness and you can still make it work!!

Figs are fairly hardy (to -10ish) but may need fleecing to protect the buds.

Most sumach are tough as old boots - they're hardy in Scandinavia I think! Again, they are supposed to like well-drained soil, though my neighbour has a very handsome one in heavy clay that is doing just fine. grin

moomin183 Tue 11-Oct-16 11:15:52

Thank You very much for the advice and taking the time to reply! I am very sad to be leaving my garden behind - but also looking forward to having a new project. The new garden is not so much a garden - it's a barren concrete yard. Walled on all sides and south facing. I am very tempted to bring as many plants as possible but there are no beds/anywhere to plant anything so was imagining just bringing a few small trees in their pots to get started. The Strawberry tree was 'rescued' from the reduced section at a garden centre about 9 years ago. It was small and very sickly/spindly and sorry looking. It is now almost 4 ft high and thriving. I think I will bring it and pop it in the most sheltered corner of new yard and keep my eye on it and fingers crossed! It's such a lovely little tree. Pleased to hear the sumach should be fine, and the figs. I plan to spend the first year sussing out what is grows well in other people's gardens, getting an idea of how the sun travels around the yard, how sheltered it really is etc before leaping into redesigning the yard. I am so tempted to bring as many plants as possible, husband thinks I should leave them all behind and start again as there isn't even anywhere to plant anything yet. I am more upset about leaving the garden than I am the house! Thanks again for the advice, much appreciated!

shovetheholly Tue 11-Oct-16 11:54:48

A walled garden - even a concrete one - is a lovely thing! I am sure you'll have that hard surface up in no time and will create something amazing. I hope the walls will also offer your beloved trees some support against exposure and cold. I regularly take cuttings or small plants from the south east to the north, and I find that they sulk and struggle for a bit, but they do adjust after a year or so. It can be worth being cautious about protecting them if they're going in autumn, e.g. bubble wrapping the pots, fleecing exposed branches.

Good luck with your move - I think it's lovely to take old friends from your existing garden with you. Oh, and I'm a big fan of taking your time planning a garden. It's also a huge part of the fun!!

Qwebec Fri 14-Oct-16 00:48:34

Concrete is not a problem where you live. If you don't want to dig up the concrete, you can make a flower bed over it , like on the picture. I would get a bit of everything you love in your garden and do tests.

Ferguson Sat 15-Oct-16 19:09:51

You might be able to gain some information from the Lakeland Horticultural Society - this is their web site. I think it also has 'links' to other gardening sites:

moomin183 Sat 15-Oct-16 20:54:02

Thank You for the link Ferguson - I shall have a browse in a little while! I have been trying to do as much research online and through books as possible with regard to plant hardiness but it is all a little confusing and one site will say one thing while another is completely different. I plan to bring some plants, cuttings and seeds collected from the garden and keep my fingers and toes crossed!

moomin183 Sat 15-Oct-16 21:28:33

Thanks for the idea of raised beds Qwebec - my new 'garden' will be entirely concrete so this would be a very good idea. I have three big raised beds in my current garden and enjoy growing lots of vegetables - would love to grow my own in the new place too. Have also been thinking about espalier trained plants to cover the walls and squeeze in some more greenery. At the moment the idea I have in my head is to create a kind of walled kitchen garden - with plenty of vegetables, herbs and flowers - that would be lovely!

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