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What shall I do with my slope?

(12 Posts)
LaTrucha Sat 25-Jul-09 13:52:58

At the end of our tiny garden we have a steep slope. Currently, there are some nice established plants there which were therer when we moved in (hebe, heather, rosemay, sage etc). The house was emoty for two years before we moved and the ground not used by those plants is matted with tall grass roots. The soil is not good quality and is probably not that deep before you get to builder's rubble etc.

We're about to tackle that grass and do what we can with the roots.

What shall I do with it next?

Ideally, I'd liek to terrace it and grow vegetables but I think it will be too expensive for us. If anyone could give us a rough estimate, I'd be grateful.

We can't plant vegetables directly in the soil, btw, as there is a possible contamination risk (it's built on an old tip).

The other option is to plant it up. We could use the same sorts of things but I'd love to hear other ideas, especially for ground cover. Cheap things if possible!

Plants have to be tolerant to wind and sea (although a low-growing conifer survives there and they are supposed to hate those conditions).As I said, the soil probably isn't that deep.

Ideas please! And thanks.

missingtheaction Sat 25-Jul-09 19:07:55

What sort of size and shape? and what do you do in your garden? play? sit and drink wine? hang out the washing? do you like gardening or really want a trouble-free outside room?

LaTrucha Sat 25-Jul-09 20:59:12

I like gardening but I don't have too much time for it, or money.

The garden is about four metres wide and three metres high. The angle is quite steep.
IIt rises up from the back of our lawn. We use the garden for playing with the baby, washing and eating out

LaTrucha Sun 26-Jul-09 10:59:23


GentleOtter Sun 26-Jul-09 11:06:36

If you were prepared to put in a backbreaking weekend then I would suggest terracing your steep slope with tyres compacted with earth like this then planting eg thyme in the spaces between. It would cost very little if you approached a local garage for the tyres.

LaTrucha Sun 26-Jul-09 17:36:15

Hmm... that's interesting. We weren't convinced about being able to do it ourselves but maybe it is possible.

LaTrucha Sun 26-Jul-09 21:28:32


LaTrucha Mon 27-Jul-09 13:14:18

one more time...

IbblyDranus Mon 27-Jul-09 13:18:09

is this a thread about uphill gardening? shock

LaTrucha Mon 27-Jul-09 21:52:02

It's trying to be. It's a hill at the back of my garden currently looking shabby.

missingtheaction Tue 28-Jul-09 22:04:40

steep slopes are generally difficult to garden. it's impossible to cut grass on them and the soil gradually washes down. the best thing is to terrace them if you can - if not tyres then 'sleepers' (new chunks of wood the shape of old railway sleepers - don't be tempted to get recycled ones) to turn the slope into some big steps with flat bits between the risers to grow on

alternatively you can try to cover the slope with groundcovering plants that will smother most of the weeds. you see this on embankments sometimes. shrubby stuff works best so you could use hypericum/st john's wort, hebes. If the soil is rubbish then you will need t plant these in 'pockets' - dig out a big hole, fill it with good quality soil/soil improver/fertiliser and plant in there. some of yoru existing shrubs may burst into life if you replant them like that

you could try using it as a sort of veg patch even with the slope so you could dig out planting pockets for courgettes and squash - only temporary cover inthe summer though - or you could try coverign the whole thing with alpine strawberries

or next year weed it early in the year then chuck in loads of annual undemanding seeds like poppies, cornflowers, nigella, marigolds, nasturtiums and let them do their bit

LaTrucha Fri 31-Jul-09 13:34:35

Sorry missingtheaction. Flu struck here so have not been on.

Those are great ideas. We may get a quote on terracing but I reckon it will run into the hundreds. Strawberries is a good idea.

I tried to do the annuals this year but it was probably too late. We're going ot attack it once the flu has gone.


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