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What are your resources?

LatimerLatimer Posts: 1,046
Hi all

I'm fairly comfortable designing and dividing the garden space, and I'm somewhat getting to grips with the vertical aspect too but I'm struggling to find the right resources to choose appropriate plants.

For example, on the patio area I know i want large (2m height) plants in containers, I know i don't want flowers, I know i don't want palms and tropical type plants. What i want are trees and shrubs, medium density with interesting leaves, architectural plants. However I'm clueless when it comes to plants and I'm not really sure what are the best resources to use to find what i have in my head. 

I like books for reference, perhaps there is a good RHS one (I was looking at "What Plant Where") that someone could recommend?

Many thanks,

I’ve no idea what I’m doing. 


  • josusa47josusa47 Posts: 3,530
    When life gets back to normal, try looking in charity shops and the public library.
  • Lizzie27Lizzie27 Posts: 11,960
    An RHS Encyclopedia of Plants would help as it has design tips in the front followed by various colour pictures/descriptions of trees, shrubs, perennials, annuals, bulbs, grasses etc divided into seasons, size and colour.  Have a look on Amazon to see if somebody is selling a used book in good condition. Mine is the 5th edition, published 2011, I think they've published a newer version since then.
    North East Somerset - Clay soil over limestone
  • LatimerLatimer Posts: 1,046
    Thanks @Lizzie27 I'll see if i can find a copy
    I’ve no idea what I’m doing. 
  • micearguersmicearguers Posts: 625
    I have a lot of plant books, about half from charity shops and they are great. Nonetheless browsing the internet, refining search terms, collecting links to garden forums, gardening columns in newspapers, specialist nurseries, blogs and more can be a nice pastime / treasure hunt  / puzzle.
    Of course you can also ask here; it helps if you state your location or climate and the aspect where you want plants.
  • ObelixxObelixx Posts: 29,836
    Meanwhile, the RHS website is a mine of information about plants, seasonal gardening jobs, design advice, propagation techniques and much more.  Google will usually find something about plants not in the RHS database.

    You can look up plants by name to get cultivation advice - soil, aspect, hardiness etc - or use their plant selector feature to search using criteria such as aspect, soil, misture, exposure, garden type, height, colour 

    Watch Gardeners' World and Beechgrove for general garden tips.  Join the RHS and get their monthly magazine plus free access to their gardens and experts.
    Vendée - 20kms from Atlantic coast.
    "We don't stop playing because we grow old; we grow old because we stop playing." - George Bernard Shaw
  • LatimerLatimer Posts: 1,046
    Thank you @micearguers and @Obelixx (I was such an Asterix fan as a kid!) I'll keep hunting and will make good use of the RHS
    I’ve no idea what I’m doing. 
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