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Plant suggestions for sunny border please!

Anna33Anna33 Posts: 300
I'm helping a friend redo their neglected garden, and I need some ideas for plants. It's quite a small garden, in the suburbs of a city, and will be mostly lawn with borders up the side of and along the back of the lawn. The borders will butt up against a wall. I'm digging these out and improving the existing soil.

So... They have a blue hibiscus which is staying, and they want lavender, which is great. But what else will go with those two? The criteria is:

Sunny border, bakes in summer
Borders will be about 1m wide and about 5m long
Nothing that needs too much work (they're not huge gardeners & have a very young baby)
Nothing too cottage gardeny (not cottage garden overload, anyway!)
Nothing spiky or poisonous (young baby & lots of friends with kids)

I've got a few ideas, but my frame of knowledge is very much a cottage garden. Other than that, I'm a bit stumped!

I want to put in geraniums for ground cover, maybe some stachys (lamb's ears) and lychnis coronaria.

What else fits the above and the hibiscus & lavender?


  • Lizzie27Lizzie27 Posts: 10,792
    Grasses? Potentilla (the shrubby ones). Perhaps another hibiscus even. I'd also put the lavender in groups of 3 in triangles and repeat along the bed, rather than a row. Catmint might also do well.
    North East Somerset - Clay soil over limestone
  • Anna33Anna33 Posts: 300
    Thank you - had thought of potentilla as well, but not grasses - will go look some up!
  • josusa47josusa47 Posts: 3,531
    Most aromatic plants appreciate dry sunshine - think Mediterranean.  Cistus, oleander, marjoram, thyme, lemon balm, rosemary, all these are low maintenance and good for pollinators. Maybe a fig tree or olive?  There's an olive variety, I think it's called something like fastigiata, that doesn't take up much space because the branches grow up rather than spreading.  Eucalyptus would also do well.  As would any succulent, some of them have dazzling bright flowers.  Nasturtiums .sow them once and they will self seed for ever.
  • Dirty HarryDirty Harry Posts: 1,021
    Erysimum bowles mauve, french lavender, dianthus, californian poppies, rosemary, dwarf buddlejas.
  • Anna33Anna33 Posts: 300
    Thank you both - brilliant suggestions.
  • DovefromaboveDovefromabove Posts: 82,736
    Cistus, great for sunny borders, reliable flowers throughout summer.
    “I am not lost, for I know where I am. But however, where I am may be lost.” Winnie the Pooh

  • Rose121Rose121 Posts: 132
    Salvia - just avoid the more cottagey colours. I love my royal bumble and blue note. 
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