Forum home Plants

***Help Wanted*** Planted Border Design/Landscaping - See pictures

James220James220 Posts: 11
edited April 2019 in Plants


Fairly new to the gardening scene so please go easy on me!

I have a smallish planted border and the top end of my lawn that is bugging me and I am in need of inspiration to change it. It currently has a range of shrub type plants on the left and right and some white stone with a bird bath in the middle due to access hatches for drains etc. (see pics below). I don't currently like the way it looks and would greatly appreciate any ideas and/or advice for replanting and landscaping to create something a bit more eye catching and exciting. I am open to keeping and moving around current plants/materials as well as getting new plants and other materials if need be. 

I live in Aberdeen and lawn is south facing, however due to the fence this border gets limited sunlight. This hasn't appeared to be a problem in the past for growing. 

Photos taken in early April.

I can give more info. if needed. 

Thanks in advance!  :)



  • ObelixxObelixx Posts: 29,649
    OK.  The fence posts and structural supports on the end fence are on your side which indicates they are your responsibility so I would get some vine eyes - screws with round loops at the head end - and attach those to your fence posts at 30cm/12" intervals and then thread through some wire with tensioners at the end to keep the wires tight.  Then, behind the shrubs, I would plant a repeat flowering, perfumed rambling rose (see David Austin website) as these are easier to train than climbing roses and will brighten up the fence and give you colour and perfume.

    I would also cut that straight line at the end into a curved shape to soften the look or else cut out two triangles that go form the fences to each side of the white stones and fill that new space with some shrub roses and/or perennials and some spring bulbs to increase and extend the interest.  If the white stones have to stay, give them a formal edge each side and put down some more so they are thicker and have no soil showing thru.

    Vendée - 20kms from Atlantic coast.
    "We don't stop playing because we grow old; we grow old because we stop playing." - George Bernard Shaw
  • FlinsterFlinster Posts: 883
    I’d be planting a tree to obscure the view of those windows and think I would make the borders bigger. I wonder if the border is swamped/dwarfed by the expanse of grass?
  • AnniDAnniD Posts: 11,948
    I would definitely make the border larger, it seems a bit on the mean side (sorry James). I don't know if you have considered making a border along the fence at the side, it depends on how keen you are !
    I agree with Obelixx that it would be softened by curving it, and maybe replacing the white stones if possible. Due to the construction of the fence, the light is not so limited as it would be by solid panels so that helps. 
    As regards the planting, do you want shrubs or perennials , do you plan to spend a lot of time tending it, or do you want something that looks nice without too much effort ?  :)
  • ObelixxObelixx Posts: 29,649
    Mostly, what you do depends on the soil, the aspect and how much time you want to spend on making an interesting garden.  It doesn't have to be high maintenance once done but will require some effort and money to improve it.   

    If we could have a picture of the entire garden and be told which way it faces we could come up with suggestions for that right hand side too - and the rest......... 
    Vendée - 20kms from Atlantic coast.
    "We don't stop playing because we grow old; we grow old because we stop playing." - George Bernard Shaw
  • James220James220 Posts: 11
    Hello All, 

    Thank you very much for your comments. Lots of very interesting ideas and thoughts. You have all definitely opened my eyes to the fact that there is probably too much grass (that is not really 'used') and there could be more border(s)!

    I like the idea of changing the shape of the border to improve the look on the eye. Would you suggest some sort of semi-circle shape from left to right edge to bring it out into the grass a bit? This will also provide some more space for planting!  :) I am also open the idea of creating a border down the right hand side. Do you have any suggestions in terms of positioning, shape and size? I am thinking to wave/curve the edge to make it more natural? Do you have any experience on good looking edging?

    With regards to the white stone, it does not have to stay! (I not this biggest fan of it!) However it does cover some very unsightly access hatches. Therefore if it went I would need to think of something else to go in there that is not planted in the ground? Maybe an ornament? Pots? 

    In terms of plants, I am relatively new to the gardening scene! Therefore, relatively easier to care for and hardiness would be important features. I am thinking evergreen shrubs? 

    The garden is South facing and not 100% sure on soil quality/type. 

    Any further ideas, suggestions and advice is very much appreciated!  :)


  • I couldn't see any indication to the length of your lawn from your house, but I wouldn't plant a tree which is going to grow taller unless you could be sure that the shadow from it when fully grown didn't cross the whole length of your lawn onto your seating area or to your house windows James.
    Your garden could do with a focal point, so planting up against the fence with a colourful rose or clematis would help to give one, also something that would flower or hold it's leaf in the winter would add extra interest too.
  • JennyJJennyJ Posts: 9,616
    Darker coloured stone or slate chippings would look less stark than the white, or coarse bark chippings for a more natural look, depending on what planting style you want to go for.
    Doncaster, South Yorkshire. Soil type: sandy, well-drained
  • AnniDAnniD Posts: 11,948
    edited April 2019
    If (when !) you extend the border, make sure it's a good size. Apart from anything else,  you want to give the plants room to grow. It's very tempting to plant them close together for instant results,  but then you would be cutting them back or having to move them in the future. 
    The other thing to remember is to make the curves generous, if they're too tight it makes it difficult to manoeuvre the mower around them (unless you have one of those robotic ones). 
    With regard to the bird bath, if you're happy with it, and the birds use it, l would just replace the stones with something darker, or you could always put a statue or something similar that you like there.
    You can buy a soil testing kit at the garden centre, use it in a couple of different areas as you may find the soil is slightly different in different places. This will help with choosing the plants you want to grow.  :)
  • ObelixxObelixx Posts: 29,649
    How long is the garden?  How wide?  Do you have or are you planning to have children and/or dogs?

    Vendée - 20kms from Atlantic coast.
    "We don't stop playing because we grow old; we grow old because we stop playing." - George Bernard Shaw
Sign In or Register to comment.