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Opinions please :)

KCMM09KCMM09 Posts: 74
edited May 2021 in Garden design
Hi all, 
this is my garden. I feel brave posting as I’m a bit unhappy with it at the moment. To the left, you can see some perennials have been planted or coming back, the arbour has a bare root rose climber starting to grow and a potted started to grow over it. To the right of that are roses and a continus shrub which ill keep small. In the sleepers are various shrubs and some bedding. Some haven’t grown back yet etc. 

My garden is north facing. Clay soil but within the borders I have dug a few feet and replaced with compost mixtures. The sleepers were clay and I also add compost to that. 

I like gardening any time of year. I’d like the garden to have full borders all year round. I like perennials but feel
more shrubs may be beneficial. I like cottage plants.

I’d like ideas of what you’d do if this was your garden, to the borders. Kind words only please :) I’m new to gardening 


  • KCMM09KCMM09 Posts: 74

  • JacquimcmahonJacquimcmahon Posts: 1,021
    It likes lovely. Clearly you have put a lot of thought into the layout. A lot will depend on what your personal style is, formal, cottage, wild… whatever or even specific colour schemes etc. possibly more than that also how much annual time you want to spend doing gardening. All of these will have an effect on “what next” types of decisions.
    Marne la vallée, basically just outside Paris 🇫🇷, but definitely Scottish at heart.
  • KCMM09KCMM09 Posts: 74
    Thank you @Jacquimcmahon
    i like pinks, whites, purples and evergreens with green foliage. The layout is done now as it took a lot of time but within the borders I like cottage type plants. I would like to have a full garden border though all year round 
  • Nanny BeachNanny Beach Posts: 8,717
    Welcome we only do kind words on here. We need soil type clay, sand,chalk,does garden face NSEW style,how mut time and money are you prepared to throw at it. If you want to know what we would do, that's like how long is a piece of string
  • KCMM09KCMM09 Posts: 74
    @Nanny Beach I have updated my post , thanks 
  • LynLyn Posts: 23,190
    If it were mine I wouldn’t put any shrubs in,  the beds are quite small, most shrubs will grow at least 3’ in all directions,  they only flower for a couple of weeks in a year and you would need to widen your beds.

    I would concentrate on perennials for easiness, bulbs for winter and spring that can be left in, then have a go at sowing some annuals for pretty colours in the summer.  Dahlias will flower until the frost gets them, usually November here. 
    I’ve  got dahlias growing facing NSE&West.

     Best thing is to try, every year is different, you’ll learn what’s working for you, if it doesn’t you can change it next year.

    google what plants like shade, then see what you like. 

    We all change our gardens about, move things around, try new plants.

    Gardening on the wild, windy west side of Dartmoor. 

  • ObelixxObelixx Posts: 30,019
    Climbers.  That left hand fence is just asking to have climbers to extend the season of interest?  As the fence posts are on our side that would indicate the fence is yours so you could easily fix vine eyes to the posts at 30cm interval and then tension wires between them.  It's a cheap and unobtrusive way to provide support for a repeat flowering rambling rose such as Albéric Barbier (white) or Phyllis Bide (pink).   There are plenty of climbing roses that would do too. 

    Clematis would be another possibility to plant on its own or to mingle with the rose and I would advise a viticella as they are robust, come in many forms and colours and are easy to prune and care for once established.  Betty Corning is a good one -
    as is Black prince -
    or Hagelby Pink -
    Etoile rose would be good at the sunnier end of the fence - 

    If you are allowed to attach supports such as wires, that wall at the bottom is asking for a lovely repeat flowering rose or a fan-trained blackberry or tayberry.

    Other than that there are loads of hardy geraniums, geums, astrantias that would cope with being north facing and give you a long season of flowering interest without swamping your dwarf conifers.
    Vendée - 20kms from Atlantic coast.
    "We don't stop playing because we grow old; we grow old because we stop playing." - George Bernard Shaw
  • LynLyn Posts: 23,190
    The wall at the bottom looks like the back house garage, but you could put 2 stout posts in and a 6 x 6’ piece of trellis attached. 
    Gardening on the wild, windy west side of Dartmoor. 

  • AngelicantAngelicant Posts: 130
    I think it looks really good and would second Lyn's point about shrubs as most will grow too big. You have a really good framework there with what you already have and it will still look nice in winter as you have enough bright spots with the structures and hard landscaping. For planting, I have a pink hardy geranium that starts to flower in May and carries on until November. It will spread if you let it but I keep it under control. Astrantia, Agapanthus & Phlox are also very long flowering. I am growing Salvias and Guara from seed this year. I would also suggest some Hellebores for early flowering next year and maybe Evergreen Clematis Avalanche. Cottage gardens can take years to get 'right' without being too wild and random. Mine is still very much a work in progress and I have been here since 1985 but then I think that's what gardening is all about.
  • KCMM09KCMM09 Posts: 74
    Thank you all so much for your replies, I really enjoyed reading them and completely understand your choices! Thanks so much! 

    I’ll skip shrubs, and you’ve given me more confidence in my decision for what I have started! 

    So to the left it’s not visible really as it’s just started to grow back but I have a clematis there. I like the idea of adding more and have bought the wire supports so this is great! 

    The back wall, I actually bought the supports for as the shrub roses grow quite tall, maybe I could add a climber at the back as well to go behind it. 

    And you’re right, gardens take time. I’m too impatient lol! I love the journey but sometimes I want it all complete already! 
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