Hi Everyone, first time poster here with no gardening knowledge what so
Ive got two rectangle areas in my garden, on a slope, about 4m x 2m in
are. What shrubs that require little attention, are pretty to look at
etc. could i put in these areas that will cover the area quickly with
fairly quick results!
Big ask im thinking, but dont really know where to start!
Things to think about when you selecting plants or asking advice:
1) What type of soil do I have there (a shake test will help):
2) What sort of sun does the spot experience? Shade all day? Shade
half the day? Sun all day?
3) How wet is the soil there? Next to a pond? Dry as the Sahara? Does
it vary much over the course of a year? Can you water there? Do you want
to water there? If so, just till the plant is established or forever?
4) With slopes especially, how steep is it? If it's barely a rise,
what you grow doesn't much matter in terms of keeping the soil in place.
If it's steeper, you may need to keep the soil completely covered
in order to keep it from eroding down the hill. And if you don't keep it
covered with plants or heavy mulch, you're going to be weeding early
and often. Your bare patch is 2x4m; is the 4 m direction across the slope,
or up and down it? If it's up and down, I'd definitely be thinking
more about a mixture of species -- roots at various depths in the soil will
help keep the soil from all sliding down the hill in a giant pancake when
a wet winter comes.
5) Where are you in the world? I see the gardenbanter.uk, but the advice
I'd give you for Devon is different from the advice I'd give you for Orkney.
Plants can't get up and move when conditions are not to their liking, but
they also don't grow well when the conditions are not to their liking.
6) How big do you want the plant(s) to get? You're saying shrub -- there's
a big difference between the size of some small, shrubby heathers or a
big rhododendron. Do you have something you want to block out? How sold are
you on the idea of a shrub instead of say, herbaceous perennials (which
are easier to clean up than many shrubs).
7) Deciduous or evergreen?
8) What do you want it to look like? Big flowers? Little flowers? No
flowers? Interesting bark?
9) Can it be toxic, like a Kalmia, or does it need to be something the
kids and the dogs can browse on safely?
10) Do you want it to attract birds? Or is this in an area where a roosting
bird could decorate an unsuspecting guest, or keep you scrubbing your outdoor
tables and chairs each time before you can use them?
11) How much work do you want to do on selecting the right plant
for this spot? If you'd like to learn more about gardening, there may be
classes for beginners near you, and books to consult like Right Plant, Right
Place (one I highly recommend you might want to look at even if you
aren't all that keen on learning much about basic gardening). If you're
not terribly interested, or you're terribly busy, taking your
soil shake test jar and some good site photos and information to
a good local nursery* and asking for help in selecting good plant(s) for
the spot will get the job done quickly and expertly.
*good local nursery: one where at least some staff have some horticultural
qualifications, tend to have sheathed pruners on their belts or mudstains
on their trousers, and tend to speak Latin names; not the part time
employees of a home supply warehouse who can barely tell a pansy from
So you see, I've just managed to complicate the situation for you quite a
bit, I'm afraid. But all plants are not created equal, and all plants
will not grow where you would like to plunk them down. On the other hand,
a well chosen plant for the site can be a delight for many, many years
and cause you minimal work and expense -- and with a woody plant,
an expert's advice can help a great deal towards making sure you get the
lots of delight, minimal work sort.
If you'd like to give us some more information, I'd be glad to try
to give you some species to choose from that might be suitable for
your area, which may help cut back on the amount of work you'll need
to do to choose.
Having only a simplistic view of the world he names one species knowing
nothing about the OP or their situation except that they are in the UK and
then chops into another poster for asking for more information. If only he
could be consistently wrong we could say "just consult him and do the
opposite of whatever he says" but he cannot manage even that.
Kay has forgotten more than Brooklyn/Shelly has ever known about
gardening, but when he gets a snoot full, all he knows is abuse.
Subject: Re: I would like some feedback..
Date: Tue, 25 Mar 2008 10:51:22 -0700 (PDT)
Brooklyn/Shelly: Your parents must have had high hopes for you to
succeed in the arts... you're not going to do well in business unless
you change your name.
He also enjoys adolescent sexual innuendoes. All in all, he is a pain in
the backside, and a waste of time.
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