lou_thompson

Help with planting large flower bed

Lou Thompson
7 years ago
Any advice on planting up this large bed we have created? We ended up with a steep bank after extending back of house, and large fence (great advice on this a few weeks ago - thank you!). Bed is south west facing, loads of sun, good drainage (UK south coast). House yet to be painted (light colour) and steps to left not yet covered (will also be large patio area to left). Thank you!

Comments (43)

  • njcook53
    7 years ago
    Ferns, delphinium, foxgloves and roses all speak English Garden to me!
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  • PRO
    Dytecture
    7 years ago
    Inverst larger vegetation so that the roots of the plants will make the slope more stable.
  • PRO
    ASVInteriors
    7 years ago
    Rosemary, thyme, sage, last all year round and smell beautiful, lavender loves sun as well, there are certain roses that produce all summer long and finally you can add your summer herbs - adding perfume and practicality (don't forget these will grow at various heights creating visual interest as well as edible value!)
  • houssaon
    7 years ago
    In this example, Fenton Roberts created a new planting scheme for a 15 metre stretch of existing raised bed which would be interesting throughout the year. The image shows the garden in September:
    planting scheme for a rustic style raised bed · More Info
    Earlier in the year Paeonies, Primroses, Bergenias and Euphorbias come to the fore. Add evergreen foliage, combining interesting leaf shapes and textures and shrubs to give the bed structure. Another shot:
    planting scheme for a rustic style raised bed · More Info
    Another garden:
    fenton roberts garden design · More Info
  • María Graciela Navarro
    7 years ago
    Me encantaría tener ese espacio para poner plantas,. Yo elegiría las plantas carnosas o suculentas, ya que no necesitan mucho riego y así se puede ahorrar agua, que es un bien tan preciado.
  • PRO
    OnePlan
    7 years ago
    If you do decide that some or all of this patch can be kitchen garden - if you section it into workable (reachable) chunks with vetrically placed flat wood planks to walk on you will be able to harvest and tend to you crop without getting too muddy !!
    Add several horizontal 'noggins' of 1x1 screwed to the planks to stop you slipping on them !!! And don't forget my invite to your food fest BBQ when it's all grown !!! I'm UK south coast too !!!!
    Kind regards, Karen at OnePlan
  • Maria Cristina R. Adkins
    7 years ago
    I agree with people are suggesting: a vegetable garden and herbs!
  • judianna20
    7 years ago
    Production Garden · More Info
  • Lou Thompson
    Original Author
    7 years ago
    Great ideas - thank you all! I have loads of herbs ready to go in - and the random hole on the right (an awkward drain cover we had to box in I think can have big tub of mint inside. I love the idea of some lavender - especially down the edge of steps where people will brush past. May fill it with veg and strawberries this year - then invest in some more plants as other suggestions next when we have some more money!!!
  • Lou Thompson
    Original Author
    7 years ago
    And Karen - welcome for BBQ when it's all grown! Hope you've been enjoying some long awaited sun
  • PRO
    OnePlan
    7 years ago
    I have a red nose from Sunday !!! ( sunshine not booze !!! )
  • Sharon Cameron
    7 years ago
    Consider some stepping stones within the garden bed too, easy access once planted.
  • vintagewink
    7 years ago
    It looks like a wonderful space for a kitchen garden. My advice would be more about maintenance. How will you water the garden? If you have a spigot close by, I recommend a soaker hose. You can wind it around the base of your plants and set it on timer. The roots need the water, not the leaves; and water on the leaves on a sunny day can actually work to dry your plants out more quickly. I agree with the stepping stone plan somewhere in there. Make sure you can easily reach everything for pulling weeds and harvesting without having to step through something else. Packed down soil isn't good for plants either. Also, keep some kind of container or space handy in or near the garden for disposing of weeds. It seems I always have small piles of garden discard laying around. These things are much easier to dispose of if they've had a chance to dry out. Good luck and happy planting!
  • kathleen MK
    7 years ago
    See what your neighbors who garden might pass along to you. Those cuttings will be hardy in your climate. I would blend edibles like veggies and herbs with some flowers and shrubs.
  • maryannejohnson123
    7 years ago
    dont forget the tomatoes!in the plot or in a pot,its what summer is for!have fun.
  • yvonnecmartin
    7 years ago
    Echoing vintagewink: Be sure to design the space so that you have paths or stepping stones so that you can reach every plant. Typically one's reach is about 18 inches, so 36 inches is the optimum width of a planting. Yes, do try to get plants from neighbors or garden clubs' plant sales.

    I love my asparagus patch, but I'm not sure if you have enough room for that. It would be in the back because in summer asparagus gets very tall.
  • Lou Thompson
    Original Author
    7 years ago
    I have got lots of odd ends of sleepers left over - do you think they would be ok as stepping stones?
  • Rare Bird
    7 years ago
    The problem with a herb garden in the Uk is most plants are annuals and U ll have nothing for the winter. if U want herbs keep the to side of steps and put in small shrubs which add interest all year round
  • PRO
    Peggy Poulos Interior and Exterior Design
    7 years ago
    last modified: 7 years ago
    You could create it like a knot garden or a somewhat formal garden of shrubs with loosely planted flowers and veggies within. As always, you have to roll your curser over the picture to get the full image. It does not need to be as formal as this, but could incorporate a structure of shrubs and then random plantings within.

    A Classic Country White Garden · More Info
  • armygirl1987
    7 years ago
    Definitely do vegetable and herb garden
  • kelly9367
    7 years ago
    Dwarf conifer garden
  • katsesler
    7 years ago
    If you do all herbs, it will all look dead in the winter. I'm not sure what your climate is like there. I would recommend putting some evergreens (small shrubs not trees) in the back (that don't grow taller than the bottom of the window) and layering in some flowering shrubs in front of those and then your herbs near the front so you have layers of plants.
  • katsesler
    7 years ago
    Someone mentioned foxgloves... (though poisonous, they grow really well from seed and in my climate I can seed in the fall and have flowers the following spring. Don't mix with your salad greens though. But they are really beautiful.
  • katsesler
    7 years ago
    Rosemary is evergreen though...you could use that, it gets quite big and shrubby
  • cher55572
    7 years ago
    I would put some perennials in around your herbs. A potentilla bush is smaller but has flowers from spring to fall, they come in a variety of different colours and are easy to look after and grow. Also look for other perennials that can add interesting color through their leaf colors such as hostas....look for the smaller varities, yarrow flowers grow taller and is easy to grow, comes in different colors, you usually need to put a loop around it as it can fall over and be messy but it has lovely flowers all sping to fall. You might want to out an ornamental grass somewhere there a some very interesting types that spiral etc.
  • susangiffen
    7 years ago
    Giffen5 Two thoughts: it looks like you need to add dirt. If that's true it gives you an opportunity to make your garden two layers deep, which would help with access and stability and the possibility of modifying the shape of the beds. I.e. Putting in curving path across the garden or creatin two irregular upper spaces and two umatched lower spaces. Planting odd numbers in a grouping (three, five, seven etc. Plants of the same type together) makes the garden look more natural and blends colours and sizes better.
  • Margo
    7 years ago
    I would line it and make it a water feature. You could incorperate some plantings. So many ideas but not knowing your taste and budget is hard to get to detailed.
  • Joyce Fenner
    7 years ago
    I would install a retaining wall of timbers half way down to divide the space, this would help with erosion. Also it would make reaching plants easier for cultivating and harvesting. We did something similar at our 3rd house in Valparaiso, IN.
  • PRO
    OnePlan
    7 years ago
    we have rosemary, lemon balm, mint, thyme and chives out all year long !
  • Susan Ortiz
    7 years ago
    Modern and low maintenance
  • Jessica
    7 years ago
    I love the idea of a kitchen garden, maybe add in some large stones (bowling ball sized) to add more interest
  • joannpb
    7 years ago
    How avid a gardener are you? If you're a keen hobby gardener, it could be fun to create a miniature landscape. Start with a small waterfall and stream-bed, designed to meander from one end - upper, to the other end - lower, with a tiny pond, from which water is pumped back to the waterfall. You might put a tiny gristmill somewhere along your stream. I'm not familiar with the best plants for your area, but there are literally thousands of miniature varieties of plant available to create everything from a miniature jungle to a manicured formal countryside look.
  • Elizabeth Hayden
    7 years ago
    Sounds like you have a patio nearby, so you will be looking at this space a lot. You def need to consider the esthetics...a veg garden is not always pleasing to the eye...shrubs will give you all season interest and much needed structure. Then add perennials and finally annuals including any veg and herb you want to tuck in.
  • 80brooke
    7 years ago
    We just did my daughter's sloping garden with bee and butterfly friendly edibles, that are evergreen hardy when not in bloom. Three different types of rosemary and 4 types of lavender. She also added a row of heather for the bees (but not people). Lavender teas, simple syrup, and lots of rosemary for cooking, yum. She lives in Seattle and so it has long wet winters and there will be greenery all year.
  • Lou Thompson
    Original Author
    7 years ago
    Thank you all so such a huge amount of advice! Really grateful. I think this is going to have to be a several stage project as cash is short. For this year I am going to put herbs (with some evergreen ones as suggested) and lots of veg (no where else to put it yet). Then going to fill it next year with some of the plants suggested - it's a huge bed so I think could take some time to stock and get right. Will put some photos up when I've made progress. I have used some of the upended sleepers cut offs as stepping stones. Thank you all!
  • Lynne Lightowler_Buck
    7 years ago
    How about a small tree in upper right corner . . . and a water feature you'd see out the window centered for attention. Perhaps loose the bottom buffer creating a series of mini terrace gardens across the bed up to the top . . . will also work to keep water in your garden rather than running down your garden and eroding. You could faux stream bed from water feature on into yard disappearing under a stone or such. You've so many wonderful thoughts here!
  • partrizia58yellow
    7 years ago
    Patricia Santarelli- I would suggest a hedge of Murraya to create a short wall around the perimeter except the front where I would plant a row of Agapanthus (remember to leave a gap to walk through, either on the side or the middle of the row. Grass the inside and if you like even plant a tree (not huge, one that will grow tall enough to enable visibility to the outside garden from the inside, and you could even plant some flowers around the tree stump once it grows tall enough. I would plant the tree either in the middle of the grass patch or to the side outside the smaller window, (remember to allow room around the tree to grow. So to recap, Murraya along the two sides where the steps are and under the window, and Agapanthus along the front. This is easy maintenance once it has grown to the height you want. Then you just trim it regularly to maintain the height and fertilize every three months or so. The smell of the orange blossoms in spring from the Murraya is amazing! Good luck with whatever you choose.
  • Martha George
    7 years ago
    put a sturdy trellis on one side (depending on how the light hits it throughout the day) to grow some vertical crops and add interest, morning glories are easy, or sweet peas, or cucumbers, peas, etc.
  • cookief
    7 years ago
    Blueberries and veggies. Grow what you like to eat and cook with.
  • Debbie Sheegog
    7 years ago
    UK? Roses will be in there somewhere! Lovely you have sunny large area! I am attaching my small, beach house garden with a fence along it that can hold wire/attach vines and running roses, and a raised garden for herbs and a few tomatoes....the experts can guide you best! I would definitely consider year-round greenery so look to them for advice to balance it all out and when it begins to bloom you have sun still and lovely backdrop!! Love it!
  • yvonnecmartin
    7 years ago
    Lavender is nice even in winter, here in Illinois oregano is evergreen, garlic chives have interesting seedheads for winter interest, sage and thyme also add some winter interest.
  • Debbie Sheegog
    7 years ago
    our basil becomes so large we plant one or 2 at most! Also sage. And yes, thanks, the oregano waiting for organic market for that and the basil actually. I love these and the thyme; and mixing them in with other flowers for containers, too!