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Advice on planting

DFWDFW Posts: 27

I have recently had my patio relaid (ignore the stained walls; due to the excess rain the pots have caused this discolouration and I just need to jet wash it off), and as part of this process I asked them to leave me some room to plant around the area - not a load of space as I wouldn’t be left with any patio, but enough to plant some climbers, perhaps some thin Italian cypress trees, etc.  In the corner though I’d like a large shrub or small tree that will make dining on the patio pleasant.
My thoughts were:-

1. Either Italian cypress or jasmine climbers in the narrow parts
2. In the corner I’ve no idea. Dogwood? Camellia? It has to be something that I can keep to around 10-12ft. Ideally Evergreen, but it’s not mandatory. 

The area is South East facing so gets the sun all morning until about 2pm when the house casts a shadow over the area. 
I will dig out the sand and put decent manure/soil in (obviously!)
Position is well sheltered from winds.

I really look forward to hearing your ideas.
Thanks so much.




  • pansyfacepansyface Posts: 22,684
    An ickle picky would help.
    Click on the icon above the box where you type und follow ze instructions...😁
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  • DFWDFW Posts: 27
    Sorry, pic here
  • AnniDAnniD Posts: 12,145
    Hello Daniel,  welcome to the forum  :)
    The first thing l would say, is that whatever you end up planting is going to need a lot of help.
    Narrow beds, a brick wall with associated footings and sunshine means that plants will struggle. 
    The soil is the most important thing so will need improvement before you even think about planting. 
    I'm guessing from the photo that the beds are about a foot wide (old school measurements !) and even narrower in some places, which means even a small tree would struggle. 
    Sorry to be so down on your ideas, but there are ways around it, l'm sure. Others will hopefully have helpful suggestions while l have a think.
    Like the pots by the way.
  • FairygirlFairygirl Posts: 54,348
    Nice little space you have @DFW, but it does make it trickier when there's a narrow space to plant in.
    Having said that - there are plenty of clematis that would be fine there. The alpinas and koreanas etc prefer drier conditions than the ones we usually plant in our gardens, so you could easily cover the walls if you wanted. Many of those types also need little attention in the way of pruning, so it's a win win  :)
    Improving the soil as you're intending will also benefit the planting. I think you might get away with a pencil cypress in that corner if you give it the right attention to get it established.
    You can always add bulbs and some vertical perennials, like alliums and salvias etc, for a succession of colour in the borders, if that's the look you want.
    Remember, you can also add some statuary, large statement pots [unplanted] a sundial or a birdbath to add interest, especially if you're looking for a Mediterranean look  :)  
    It's a place where beautiful isn't enough of a word....

    I live in west central Scotland - not where that photo is...
  • Loraine3Loraine3 Posts: 573
    Forget the Camellia, they don't like the sun on them in the morning. After a frost the sun will burn the flowers.  
  • Perhaps Lavender and Cyprus

  • I like your pots and paving. Its a shame its a bit narrow,but understand that you need patio more than beds. I'd be inclined to fork out for a statue,on a plinth for height,Clems would be nice for spring summer,not so nice looking in winter though. Pyracantha could be grown against the wall,berries for the birds too.

    The whole truth is an instrument that can only be played by an expert.
  • Papi JoPapi Jo Posts: 4,024
    Pyracantha could be grown against the wall,berries for the birds too.

    I beg to disagree with your suggestion of Pyracantha. A very spiky plant, could be dangerous or at least unpleasant in such a cramped space.
    You are invited to a virtual visit of my garden (in English or in French).
  • ObelixxObelixx Posts: 29,818
    Beware of jet washing.  You'll end up damaging the pointing.   Better to use a scrubbing brush.

    I can't, offhand, think of any plant that is going to thrive in such narrow beds at the foot of wall.  They are going to be so greatly challenged for root space, moisture and nutrients.  I would suggest instead that you cover that soil with a good, deep mulch of gravel or chipped slate to allow drainage but prevent weeds and then invest in a few deep planters that can grow trailing, vertical and/or climbing plants according to your preference.  

    If they're deep enough and you use good quality compost/planting medium you could grow quite a wide range of plants including some evergreens which will give year round interest.   You will need to water and feed them according to their needs to keep them looking good.
    Vendée - 20kms from Atlantic coast.
    "We don't stop playing because we grow old; we grow old because we stop playing." - George Bernard Shaw
  • SuesynSuesyn Posts: 650
    We have a narrow border
    (less than 30cm) between the drive and the wall of the house which we have planted with the sort of plants that would traditionally be planted on a rockery. They cope with the poor soil and don't get watered and don't even seem to mind being walked on. The disadvantage is they are low growing, although there are some bearded iris in there which thrive in there. 
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