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Laurel, roses/dogwoods, spring bulbs

JoeXJoeX Posts: 1,783
Good, simple all year colour combination?

Laurel providing an evergreen backdrop

Mid tier: roses for summer colour alternating with dogwoods for winter colour

Spring bulbs at the front


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  • Busy-LizzieBusy-Lizzie Posts: 20,384
    Hello Joe, are you asking what we think? Sounds good to me but make sure the laurel is kept under control and isn't too close to the roses. It gets big and steals water. 

    How wide is your bed? I'm a plantaholic, love perenials, so I would plant some, not too tall because of the roses, to take over from the spring bulbs.
    Dordogne and Norfolk
  • FairygirlFairygirl west central ScotlandPosts: 48,965
    If you're saying is it a good combo, I'd say - how are you maintaining the laurel?
    I personally dislike roses, so I don't know how well they'd compete with Cornus. You'd also need to ensure the soil and moisture levels were adequate. Laurel is a very thirsty shrub, and would deprive the roses and cornus.

    Spring bulbs on their own aren't always ideal, but most people mix them with perennials.
    There would need to be plenty of room for all of those plants to thrive well. 
    It's a place where beautiful isn't enough of a word....


  • punkdocpunkdoc Sheffield, Derbyshire border.Posts: 13,022
    It would need to be a very wide bed to accommodate that combination.
    There are ashtrays of emulsion,
    for the fag ends of the aristocracy.
  • JoeXJoeX Posts: 1,783


    How wide is your bed? I'm a plantaholic, love perenials, so I would plant some, not too tall because of the roses, to take over from the spring bulbs.
    Depth (front to back 1 maybe 1.5m) is my main concern I will admit, hence roses side by side with dogwoods.  I think it’s going to be pretty tight with three rows.
  • nutcutletnutcutlet PeterboroughPosts: 26,850
    I'd have a Laurel substitute, Laurel is good for a while but eventually it's a thug
  • JoeXJoeX Posts: 1,783
    Fairygirl said:

    Spring bulbs on their own aren't always ideal, but most people mix them with perennials.
    Perennials have never survived in that bed, I’ve coaxed it from lifelessness into a fairer state but it’ll take a few more years to be something regarded as prosperous.

    Hence my choices of plants that can handle some hardship, and bulbs that can be refreshed.

    it’s really the idea on year round colour and cohabitation I’m asking, nothing spectacular obviously in this arrangement.  But if the roses and dogwoods thrive I could get moments of great colour.  And looking out the window it should never look bedraggled.
  • punkdocpunkdoc Sheffield, Derbyshire border.Posts: 13,022
    If perennials won’t thrive, it is unlikely that Roses will.
    There are ashtrays of emulsion,
    for the fag ends of the aristocracy.
  • FairygirlFairygirl west central ScotlandPosts: 48,965
    Unless you plant the laurel and trim it very persistently right from the start, there won't be room for Cornus. They get big too. 
    Even then, when you factor in the access needed to do that trimming, there isn't enough room, which is why I asked how you're intending maintaining it. 
    I'd agree with @punkdoc too. If the soil isn't decent enough for perennials, roses won't be very happy.
    You'd need to add lots of organic matter to get the soil right if it isn't healthy, then pick shrubs/plants which are more suited to the space.  :)
    If you have a photo of the site,  that would help with ideas and advice.

    It's a place where beautiful isn't enough of a word....


  • JoeXJoeX Posts: 1,783
    Fairygirl said:
    Unless you plant the laurel and trim it very persistently right from the start, there won't be room for Cornus. They get big too. 
    Even then, when you factor in the access needed to do that trimming, there isn't enough room, which is why I asked how you're intending maintaining it. 
    I'd agree with @punkdoc too. If the soil isn't decent enough for perennials, roses won't be very happy.
    You'd need to add lots of organic matter to get the soil right if it isn't healthy, then pick shrubs/plants which are more suited to the space.  :)
    If you have a photo of the site,  that would help with ideas and advice.

    Thanks, but I’m not entertaining any other options - it’s this or nothing - so no point asking for alternatives.

    Im only interested in the elements I’ve asked for.

    Room to grow - understood. Soil quality - of course.

    I don’t think anyone has responded on how it might look yet?

    Thanks.
  • punkdocpunkdoc Sheffield, Derbyshire border.Posts: 13,022
    edited December 2022
    OK then, IMO it will look rather boring.
    Why this or nothing?
    Surely a bare space would look terrible, there must be lots of other options.
    There are ashtrays of emulsion,
    for the fag ends of the aristocracy.
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