Advanced search

Help please. I have very overgrown border that is looking scruffy

(16 Posts)
armbow Wed 26-Aug-09 13:37:07

I have a new build house that is now 6 or 7 years old. The front garden was planted with shrubs. They have all merged and created a big overgrown expanse.

I want to make it look neater - is this the wrong type of year to trim shrubs ????

I have from what I can tell:

Some sort of rambling rose.
several Hebes

... oh and another thing in amongst all of this are two MASSIVE plam things. Not trees but more like bushes.

They are about 6 foot tall and flower several black stalks with chilli like flowers.
Does anyone know what these are called? and indeed how to tame these aswell?

Sorry to be vague - as you can tell i am not very good at gardening.


TuttiFrutti Wed 26-Aug-09 16:57:34

You should prune shrubs every year, or you end up with exactly the problem you've got now.

Different plants have different requirements for pruning, but now is quite a good time of year for most shrubs. Basically you need to prune after flowering, so for anything which has just finished flowering, go for it.

Can you get a gardening book out of the library and look up the shrubs that you have? Or do you have any gardening friends who could tell you?

Sorry, I don't know what your plum-like things are - sounds intriguing!

armbow Wed 26-Aug-09 16:57:47


I have an electric hedge trimmer and i ain't afraid to use it grin

armbow Wed 26-Aug-09 16:58:01

sorry x post

armbow Wed 26-Aug-09 16:59:39

It is very "intriguing"

I will try and hack carefully prune tonight and see how I go.

i hate spiders though and i know there will be some lurking

thanks for advice

KnickKnack Wed 26-Aug-09 17:01:46

Is the "palm bush" a phormium ?

take a cutting of each shrub to your local garden centre. I've done this with an unknown tree which cropped up in my back garden, and they were very helpful. They gave me the name of plant, how to care for it, size it would grow to etc etc.

KnickKnack Wed 26-Aug-09 17:02:36

wear gardening gloves!!! the touching of spiders and slugs is not quite as gross then

KnickKnack Wed 26-Aug-09 17:04:01

...or ir might be a Cordyline

They can grow quite tall.

armbow Wed 26-Aug-09 18:26:47



yes that is the one !!!

armbow Wed 26-Aug-09 18:27:56

I had a nasty experience not so long ago whilst trying to tame said border and a nice fat juicy spider took residence on my shoulder.

nasty... still hate going out there.

going in after tea .....wish me luck

armbow Thu 27-Aug-09 11:52:14


went in all guns blazing last night and found that he "root" grin of the problem seems to be a very unruly rambling rose.

It was strangling all of the shrubs aswell as the Phornium.

So that is now gone (there was alot of it)

found out how to prune the phornium and the cotoneaster so will now get to grips wth them now that i can get at them hmm

If I put bark chippings down in the large gaps that are appearing will this suppress weeds?

KnickKnack Thu 27-Aug-09 12:40:05

how do you prune the phormium? I've never figured out how to.

anyone I know who has put down park chipping, has pulled up all the weeds first. It seems to be quite effective (although they all seem quite vigilant at pulling up any new roots as they appear)

armbow Thu 27-Aug-09 16:27:55

knick knack - the bbc says to chop at the outer leaves with a sharp knife - so you are pruning from the outisde in IFYSWIM

will let you know how i go on

KnickKnack Thu 27-Aug-09 21:33:47

was the pruning a success? I have 3 different varieties of the buggers to tackle, one in particular has reached about 7 foot

armbow Thu 27-Aug-09 22:00:22

...we are getting there - the leaves are really really thick and have blunted the knife.

The older leaves at the bottom just pulled out but I wanted to get the plant a bit smaller as mine sounds like yours also about 7/8 foot.

so am now going to finish tomorrow

I use the BBC website for advice. hope the link works.

KnickKnack Thu 27-Aug-09 22:18:37

good link...thanks

the spike flowers are fantastic, I have about 4 or 5 appearing this year, so far I say they've reached about 11 foot!

Join the discussion

Registering is free, easy, and means you can join in the discussion, watch threads, get discounts, win prizes and lots more.

Register now »

Already registered? Log in with: