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What plants for low maintenance, inexpensive, year-round interest?

gullivergulliver Posts: 11
Having enjoyed daffodils and tulips last year, I'm keen to repeat... in a new bed in which I can plant other stuff to provide most-of-the-year interest, rather than bare beds after the damages and tulips have finished.

Id like some flowers, and some evergreens. Bed will be in the middle of a grass area, so I don't need (but am open to) taller stuff to build height at the rear.

Suggestions appreciated, please and thanks.


  • JoeXJoeX Posts: 1,783
    Violas and pansies.  

    Spiraea japonica.

  • Lizzie27Lizzie27 Posts: 11,180
    Potentilla -the shrubby ones, available in white, pink, yellow and apricot. Euronymus, evergreen, either green and cream variegated or gold/green combo. Prostrate rosemary, thymes, geranium "Rozanne", heucheras (on special offer).
    North East Somerset - Clay soil over limestone
  • FairygirlFairygirl Posts: 52,116
    Can you give us some idea of the size of space, and aspect etc?
    That will dictate suggestions. No point recommending large shrubs if the bed's 2 feet long by a foot wide, or shade lovers if it's in full sun almost all day  ;)
    It's a place where beautiful isn't enough of a word....

    I live in west central Scotland - not where that photo is...
  • gullivergulliver Posts: 11
    My thanks to 'Tin pot' and 'Lizzie27' for your suggestions - I'll read about them to learn more.

    'Fairygirl'... thanks. Size can be up to approx 6x3 feet, south facing with decent sun. 
  • raisingirlraisingirl Posts: 6,651
    verbena bonariensis - height without bulk so good for a 'see through' bed. Flowers in autumn and the little birds love the seeds. It's like watching tiny trapeze artists swinging on the seed heads as the plants sway around in the breeze
    coronilla glauca citrina - evergreen, fragrant yellow flowers at the end of Winter
    Convolvulus cneorum if your soil is suitable - silvery leaved evergreen with white flowers for a long time over spring into summer
    “Light thinks it travels faster than anything but it is wrong. No matter how fast light travels, it finds the darkness has always got there first” 
  • Silver surferSilver surfer Posts: 4,451
    For a compact evergreen...if shady.... I wouldn't like to be without Sarcococca.
    Glossy leaves, compact, scented flowers,berries, easily tip pruned.
    Perthshire. SCOTLAND .
  • RedwingRedwing Posts: 1,393
    Based in Sussex, I garden to encourage as many birds to my garden as possible.
  • As a newbie gardener, +1 for geranium Rozanne. It's easy to grow (best in a sunny spot) and (most importantly for me) it flowers for ages!

    I've not watered the garden enough this summer so it's really suffered, yet my Rozanne has plodded along with oodles of blue/purple flowers. Typically it'll flower from May until Oct/Nov - can't say fairer than that! It really earns its keep.
  • gullivergulliver Posts: 11
    My further thanks to 'raisingirl', 'Silver surfer', 'Redwing' and 'Garden noob' for your suggestions... looks to be lots of good stuff.
  • FairygirlFairygirl Posts: 52,116
    Potentilla with bulbs underplanted, geraniums for ground cover - also with bulbs, and the sarcococca for year round evergreen. Another useful ground cover evergreen is London Pride - saxifraga urbium - which will grow anywhere, or any of the bugles  -Ajuga. The potentilla alone will fill half that space quite quickly, but you can tidy  it easily. All the others need minimal care too. If you want another evergreen Osmanthus would probably be happy enough instead of the potentilla - but the flowers are less noticeable. Potentilla is ordinary, but very good value that way.  ;)
    Make a neat edge round it too, so that the grass doesn't encroach, and mulch it after planting. 
    6 x 3 feet isn't a big space, but those will fill it quite readily and you won't have to attend to it too much  :)
    It's a place where beautiful isn't enough of a word....

    I live in west central Scotland - not where that photo is...
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