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Need advice on choice of plants

I'm trying to come up with a planting scheme for my little flower bed and wondered if anyone could suggest anything. 

In the plan below, the light grey area is the flower bed. Each pink dashed square is a square metre.

I'd love lots of flowers, probably perennials rather than annuals, and different heights, including at the back maybe 1.5m tall, down to shorter 0.5m plants near the front. I found plenty I like for the front but am struggling with the rear. During high summer the rear 1m nearest the fence is in almost permanent shade, obviously more than 1m at other times of the year. From about 2m it gets quite a lot of sun.

I have trellis on the rear fence and walls to the east and west, and have some clematis planted there, but would love a second climber for evergreen cover.

The soil is all beds and borders topsoil from a commercial supplier. It's relatively dry here, a little windy. 

Any thoughts very gratefully received.



  • gardenman91gardenman91 BrightonPosts: 429
    Hi @baytree1970R7WNg390, for height you could try Digitalis purpurea (Foxglove). They are biennial (though there are some perennial cultivars out for sale) and they will happily set seed and spread! 

    There’s also Brunnera macrophylla ‘Alexander Great’ which is perennial. The foliage itself is not tall but the forget me not like flowers can become tall ish when out.
  • gjautosgjautos BuckinghamshirePosts: 371
    I'm a big fan of verbena bonariensis. Easy to grow and goes with almost anything. In my garden they grow in sun and shade.
  • FlyDragonFlyDragon Greater ManchesterPosts: 834
    Make sure you can get access to maintain the stuff in the back corners!
  • Wrigs21Wrigs21 Posts: 163
    Check out a book called ‘Dream plants for the natural garden’, if into perennials should be able to get some great ideas.
  • Trachelospermum jasminoides is a great evergreen climber. My garden has the same aspect as yours and it grows along the back fence with the roots in permanent shade, you just need to make sure you get one tall enough to get plenty of sun at the top or it’ll take forever to reach it.
  • LoxleyLoxley NottinghamPosts: 4,976
    What kind of style do you like? Large at the back/small at the front is a quite traditional approach (but if that's what you like, that's fine!)
  • thanks for all the comments!
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