My growing obsession blog

Struggles and successes in a suburban garden

Ready to go: bed 1 February 25, 2011

Filed under: Uncategorized — mygrowingobsession @ 4:42 pm
Tags: , , , , , , , , ,

The new patio looks great. And I have several newly created beds that I plan to fill with perennials (mostly) and a few shrubs and bulbs.

Bed 1 is to the left of the house as you look out of the bi-fold doors. It’s about 3m long by 1m wide and borders our neighbours’ fence. The problem is that we can now see a bit more of our neighbours than we used to (not that we don’t like our neighbours) so I’ve chosen a couple of shrubs that will grow tall enough to give us and them some privacy.

At the middle-left hand area of the bed I’ve planted a Cotonoeaster Cornubia. Semi-evergreen, it’s described as a ‘small weeping tree covered in white flowers turning to red berries’. It will eventually (if I let it) get as tall as 3m but my plan is to keep it under control and encourage it to ‘bush out’ where I need it to screen the gap above the fence. Obviously I can’t comment on the berries or flowers yet, but the new bark is a lovely dark shiny red.

Cornus cornubia


At the other end of the bed I’ve planted a Physocarpus opulifolius ‘Diabolo’. This is a deciduous shrub with a bushier habit than the cotoneaster. It will eventually get to 1.8m high by 1.2m wide. I’ve never grown one of these before but was attracted to its purple foliage which will contrast well with the surrounding shrubs.

Underneath these shrubs I’ve dotted round a few miniature daffodil bulbs (Tete a tete I think) which I started off in little pots last autumn (and I’m so glad now that I had the foresight to do this). I’ve also dug up some congested clumps of Allium and planted these in the bed.

And this is what the bed looks like so far (yes, I know I need some more compost down the end!)

Bed 1

But what else to plant in here? I’m fancying some Japanese Anemones (white) at the back of the bed, some Verbena Bonariensis (if I can get it to germinate from seed this year) and some geraniums at the front (possibly the magenta coloured psilostemon). But what do others think?
Will blog about the other new beds later.

Light and airy July 19, 2010

I moved this Thalictrum in the spring and was worried that I’d killed it, but it’s thriving in its new home under the apple tree. (You can just see the apple tree in the background with a clematis climbing up the trunk.)

This year I created a new bed under the apple tree. It’s supposed to be a white bed but, as usual, I couldn’t bear to part with all the existing plants so this Thalictrum (and a second, single-flowered vairety) survived. But pale lilac is almost white, right?!

To be honest, I’m struggling to know what to plant for interest now (July/August). Any suggestions? The soil is quite dry under the tree and I plan to dig in more organic matter this autumn. Even so, it’s always going to be quite dry and very shady towards the back near the fence.

Plants currently looking nice in this bed include acanthus spinosa, symphitum, hellebores, white geranium, nicotiana sylvestris and Japanese anemone. All of these plants are healthy here too. 

Any ideas for summer-flowering white-ish plants that I could include next year? (Please don’t suggest bergenias as I have an irrational hatred of them!)