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Plant/garden recommendations for a shady wet clay garden.

ryankhademiryankhademi Posts: 13
edited April 2018 in Problem solving

So a week or two ago I posted about poor drainage in my garden and my issues growing a lawn that survives over more than just Summer. One side of the garden will be lawned now as it receives a good amount of sun and is South facing. Drainage was a problem but I have dug the ground and added 8 bags of compost and soil improver which seems to have done the trick (at least for now), as you can see the dug side has no puddles, and the undug side is very wet after the rain today.

So I just seeded the dug side with grass seed and hope that will set in and grow well (despite lots of stones).

My attention has now turned to the opposite side:

My initial idea was to woodchip this whole area (which should gradually improve the soil) and either have potted plants dotted around the area or dig a raised bed under the fence. There is never any direct sunlight as the fence blocks the sun from the South. Some plant ideas I had were:

Camellia japonica
Dryopteris erythrosora
Weigela 'Praecox Variegata'
Digitalis ferruginea
climbing hydrangea
Euonymus fortunei 
Viburnum carlesii 
brunnera macrophylla 'jack frost'

The ones that are happy with full shade could go under the fence, and those that like partial shade could be in pots a bit further out. Next problem is some of the plants on my list are ericaceous plants, which means I need to make the beds ericaceous or keep them in pots.

Any help or ideas would be greatly appreciated.



  • hogweedhogweed Posts: 4,053
    The big question is whether you are going to put them in the ground or not. If you are going to put them in the ground(without a raised bed) then you need to go for wet and shady plants. In the raised bed, then only shady plants. And in pots, again only shady plants. 
    Not sure if you have chosen that list of plants on whether you like them or whether you think they will do well there. Is there any reason you can't try and improve the soil in this bed also - lots of grit and compost??? It's not that big an area and it is so much easier to have plants in the ground than in pots. 
    'Optimism is the faith that leads to achievement' - Helen Keller
  • ryankhademiryankhademi Posts: 13
    edited April 2018
    The list is based on them being shady plants, and me liking the look of them. If they go in the ground, I will 100% make a raised bed with plenty of organic material for the drainage. 

    The reason I don't want to dig the whole thing is up is one part laziness (maybe next year) and I don't really see the point as I have no plans to do anything with it other than have a border and cover it in woodchips.
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