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Shrub to make my patio feel cosy

(13 Posts)
SkodaLabia Sun 28-May-17 20:52:13

I love the cosy overgrown feel of woodland gardens, but for various boring reasons due to the existing landscaping and size of my garden I'm unable to do twisty paths etc. I have a square patio beside the house, with L shaped steps off one corner down onto a square lawn, and it feels very exposed.

I'd like the patio to feel more enclosed and cosy, but am nervous about planting a tree so close to the house. I wonder whether a large arching shrub beside the patio would give the same feel if I pruned it into multi stem tree idea.

How about Sambucus nigra, or hydrangea villosa, or viburnum? I'd like something fast growing that will look in keeping with rowan, cherry, silver birch, ferns, hostas, climbing hydrangea and honeysuckle periclymenum.

GingerKitCat Mon 29-May-17 01:44:56

Not what you asked buy could you have an arch going into two large planters?

SkodaLabia Mon 29-May-17 07:55:26

I wondered about that, but I couldn't work out how the arch would work as the steps are L shaped wrapped around the corner of the patio. I do like arches though, and I love climbers.

PurpleWithRed Mon 29-May-17 08:00:37

I think we need a diagram :-). Hydrangea paniculata is on my current must-have list (also have tiny overstuffed garden so would need to decide what lose.). I have a lovely Cercis Canadensis on my patio - a nice little see-through tree with lovely foliage in the summer.

SkodaLabia Mon 29-May-17 09:21:55

There have been several diagrams of my garden on MN already due to my needing lots of handholding during its design. blushgrin

Anyway, here it is. The hatched areas are beds. The top of the pic is due West.

I have climbing hydrangeas on the fences, plus a kiwi vine because I love the leaves. I also have a honeysuckle periclymenum climbing the wall by the gate on the left of the pic.

I love the idea of an arch, but it would go diagonally across the corner of the patio, would that look weird? Or ace?

I'm a fan of more is more when it comes to plants, I love lots of foliage and Stuff For Bees.

JT05 Mon 29-May-17 09:35:43

A Fatsia, Caster Oil plant would give an enclosed jungle feel. They are quite fast growing, but it would be worth paying a little extra for a well established plant a couple of feet high. They like living in pots and are very easy to maintain.

SkodaLabia Mon 29-May-17 09:52:57

Well, as luck would have it I have 3.smile One is on the patio in a pot, it's currently at the bottom left hand corner of the pic. The other two are along the fence on the left of the pic. I ❤️ fatsias.

traviata Mon 29-May-17 10:01:37

I think a Sambucus would be lovely there, it will add more shade but it would sit nicely with your other trees. They can get rather dense when they are older if they are pruned.

An arch placed diagonally could work brilliantly, particularly if you chose a more square sort of design rather than a curve. Two uprights on each side of the steps and two cross pieces, perhaps? Like a mini-pergola?

traviata Mon 29-May-17 10:02:19

purple is your cercis canadensis in a pot?

PhuntSox Mon 29-May-17 10:27:16

What about an acer?

SkodaLabia Mon 29-May-17 10:44:36

Thanks!
I love circus canadensis, but I've only found expensive ones online. Pah.

Sambucus nigra grow well here, I think I'd go for a standard green one or a golden one as I'm not mad keen on the dark ones.

I have one acer, which is an Orange Dream, and I'm not convinced it's happy (we get pretty strong coastal winds otherwise the garden would be full of magnolia sad) so I'm reluctant to buy more until that ones done a few years. Also, they're v slow growing, aren't they?

What about those ideas up top ^, hydrangea villosa or a viburnum plicatum with the lower branches pruned out?

traviata Mon 29-May-17 10:58:21

I've never seen a hydrangea villosa pruned as a tree, but I wonder how attractive it would be from below?

What about an amelanchier - classic multi stemmed shrub/trees.

SkodaLabia Mon 29-May-17 11:12:49

Hhm, good point. I'm not mad keen on amelanchier I'm afraid (I know, I must leave MN Gardening forthwith grin). I think they might be a bit too upright as well.

I was very inspired by this pic of Mayhew's garden, I love the spreading branches.

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