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New plants, placement around existing planting, ideas please!


Where the Wild Things Are
 ...that is where I would prefer to be...
COASTAL SOUTHERN ENGLAND...silty-sandy-loam ravaged by wind
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  • clematisdorsetclematisdorset Posts: 1,192
    I have finally removed more landscaping fabric and have plants - list to follow - I felt creative and had ideas last month but have come to a sudden standstill, feeling devoid of ideas, so I will list the plants I have ready and would appreciate any ideas as to where you would place the plants. I am particularly hoping some people will have experience of growing any of the plants I mention. To be continued...
    Where the Wild Things Are
     ...that is where I would prefer to be...
    COASTAL SOUTHERN ENGLAND...silty-sandy-loam ravaged by wind
  • clematisdorsetclematisdorset Posts: 1,192
    edited March 2023
    The list of plants that I have ready to plant are 1 pot of each in a 2 or 3 litre pot:

    Deutzia x magnifica 'Rubra' 
    Pinus strobus pendula (max 11 foot tall when mature)
    Viburnum plicatum f. tomentosum 'Watanabe'
    Hypericum Hidcote
    Abelia X grandiflora
    Arbutus Unedo
    Loropatelum 'Black Pearl'
    Callicarpa Bodineri 'Profusion'

    The area is in  sometimes dappled shade, facing south and my main concerns are that the right conditions for the plants are achieved. My default soil is sandy-silty-loam. I am aware that I will need to amend the soil particularly for the Pinus (needs ericaceous, very well-draining soil for instance) and plan to do that with chipped bark mulch and ericaceous compost. I believe Loropatelum prefers acid soil, but it is a little tender, so I may put it in a pot. I think the other plants are more flexible regarding acid soil or not.

    Thank you for all ideas!
    Where the Wild Things Are
     ...that is where I would prefer to be...
    COASTAL SOUTHERN ENGLAND...silty-sandy-loam ravaged by wind
  • JennyJJennyJ Posts: 10,450
    Keep an eye on the Hypericum, it will spread quickly if it likes the situation so make sure it doesn't swamp its neighbours.
    Doncaster, South Yorkshire. Soil type: sandy, well-drained
  • GardenerSuzeGardenerSuze Posts: 5,633
    edited March 2023
    @clematisdorset I grow V Watanabe. It in a west facing border with some shade from a wall. They seem to be happy in most soils that are not too wet so should be fine for you. 

    L Black Pearl is tender here other than in a mild winter, my local nursery kept them under glass last winter. A lovely shrub flowers are a shocking pink good with the dark leaves. There is a form with white flowers but not so interesting in my opinion. You could have a colour clash with the Hypericum as it is long flowering but maybe you are OK with that. There are lots of new exciting Hypericums in the GC's I have one with very darkleaves

    Your conditions should be fine for the Deutzia not following the correct pruning is where some gardeners go wrong with this shrub.

    Abelia seems to do really well in full sun and good drainage as does Callicarpa.

    Neutral to acidic is best for Arbutus and if happy they get big!

    Cannot help with the Pine other than to say, will it cover alot of ground where it weeps?
    Pines really should be grown more perhaps we need to start a new trend.
    Heights of trees in particular can vary depending on aspect and growing conditions, labels are only a guide.

    Looks like you are going to be busy! You do have a good balance of evergreen and deciduous, also you should have flowers spring and autumn, maybe a lull high summer but I am sure you have this covered.

     Retired Gardener, new build garden, clay soil, South Notts.


    The more I garden the less I know but the more pleasure I get from it. Monty Don 
  • clematisdorsetclematisdorset Posts: 1,192
    @JennyJ thankyou, that is what I am hoping - that the Hypericum grows like my Grandpa's did! It is a sentimental choice in many ways. I remember it growing near a Fuchsia magellanica  and both of these shrubs hold a sense of magic for me.

    @GardenerSuze thankyou, I am grateful for your comprehensive reply which I can feel is leading me out of the doldrums! Your thoughts are really helpful to me - I will reply further when I have had a chance to think through your helpful comments and see how I can apply them.
    Where the Wild Things Are
     ...that is where I would prefer to be...
    COASTAL SOUTHERN ENGLAND...silty-sandy-loam ravaged by wind
  • GardenerSuzeGardenerSuze Posts: 5,633
    @clematisdorset Sorry it was a bit long started with one plant and kept thinking about more. One for your bookmarks possibly.
     Retired Gardener, new build garden, clay soil, South Notts.


    The more I garden the less I know but the more pleasure I get from it. Monty Don 
  • clematisdorsetclematisdorset Posts: 1,192
    @GardenerSuze, no not at all, I was hoping for an all-round reply !  I have just been feeling really tired recently and am finding it difficult to think about the garden in enough detail. Typical - just as I should be doing more jobs, the fatigue overtakes. I might have overtaxed myself with the landscape fabric removal, but I was desperate to get it off the soil! 
    Where the Wild Things Are
     ...that is where I would prefer to be...
    COASTAL SOUTHERN ENGLAND...silty-sandy-loam ravaged by wind
  • GardenerSuzeGardenerSuze Posts: 5,633
    @clematisdorset As you know the very best gardens evolve, I would just take your time. That is the joy of gardening you can do a job that takes 5 mins or stay outside all day. I worked for a lady with a large garden, she would say, 'as long as you are not asleep come and work in my garden there is always plenty to do'.
    A tiny garden can also be intense to care for but everyone should garden to their needs and most of all enjoy what they do. 
     Retired Gardener, new build garden, clay soil, South Notts.


    The more I garden the less I know but the more pleasure I get from it. Monty Don 
  • clematisdorsetclematisdorset Posts: 1,192
    @GardenerSuze, I like the idea of gardens evolving, I think I will try to take that path! I am really looking forward to this next phase of planting, after having many plants waiting in pots and containers.

    Thank you for your earlier reply. I have had a chance to think some more. I hope the viburnum can form the western edge of the section I am planting. It will be quite sheltered and in a dry area, with mainly morning sun, then dappled sun later. I was considering the Hypericum for this spot, as it is towards the end of the garden and I would like something that has light coloured flowers for a good part of the year. The existing camellias, amelanchier & shrub rose will be nearby. Moving further along to the east I will have the loropatelum next to the camellias possibly in a pedestal pot - the leaves of both look good together.

    I will give the abelia & callicarpa the sunniest spot together. Then, I will give the arbutus and pine the area closer to the northern wall, and I am training the pine up a bamboo pole for now, so that it will weep down from a manageable height. 

    The deutzia sounds most easy-going, and I think I will put that near the woody stems of an existing jasmine plant.

    I am going to wait for a day that is sunny, when I can observe the sun and shadows etc, and I will take time with planting, after first of all placing the plants in their expected positions.

    I may need to create some 'banks' in parts of the soil, if other roots are too near the surface or to create better free-draining areas and height. Will need to check that.

    I agree that the bright pink flowers of loropatelum are more interesting than the white-flowered version!  I seem to have a few buds on mine, so hopefully it will flower this year. I have noticed buds developing on the viburnum and the deutzia has leaves unfurling. With the pruning of the deutzia, I understand it is not necessary every year, would you say? 

    The other hypericums sound interesting! Does yours have pink buds or flowers by any chance? Maybe I am remembering seeing another similar plant somewhere!

    That is a good point about the heights of trees and shrubs. My arbutus is a bush form, so maybe that will be easier to prune, if necessary?  I love pines, the feathery softness of the foliage etc. Mine has slightly yellowy-green colouring so I am going to give it some ericaceous mulch, though I read the exact shade can vary between plants, so it may be not a problem, but ericaceous mulch would not hurt I think?

    Re the lull, the hydrangea will take over in late summer and before that, in the sunnier part hopefully there will be roses, salvia, and fuchsia, hibiscus then caryopteris.

    The viburnum may turn out to be the long-serving star of the show!
    Busy? Yes!!! I just need to pace... 

    Where the Wild Things Are
     ...that is where I would prefer to be...
    COASTAL SOUTHERN ENGLAND...silty-sandy-loam ravaged by wind
  • GardenerSuzeGardenerSuze Posts: 5,633
    edited April 2023
    Your thoughts on your viburnum sound fine. You will need to take care with watering as my plant that is three years old did struggle with the drought last summer. I have seen them with Odema in a very wet soil but should be fine with you, generally they are happy in most soils.

    The flowers of Hypericum Hidcote are a golden yellow, some gardeners find that it has a tendency to take over. I recently pruned my Hypericums. I grow H indorium Magical Universe. I prune them every year back to strong buds as space is limited. Not necessary if you have the space.They are tough plants, there is one with pink berries H Magical Lightning and also one with white berries.  Not sure how big they get if left unpruned maybe not as big as H Hidcote.

    Deutzia is also easy to grow, I love D Strawberry Fields. No need to prune in the early years but after a while old wood does need to be thinned to aid flowering.

    I would only carry out light pruning on Arbutus, when it comes to renovation of this shrub it should be done in stages over the course of a few years.

    I have enjoyed reading all of your plans hopefully some sunshine is in the forecast next week. You seem to have all aspects covered but as with all garden planting it is never the same as actually standing next to your border to make those final decisions. Place all your plants in situ would be my advice, walk up and down check from various angles be happy before planting.

    Perhaps a future project might involve some herbacous plants these could be kept simple and repeated along the border in 3s or 5s this will hold things together.

    Good Luck Suze. 
     Retired Gardener, new build garden, clay soil, South Notts.


    The more I garden the less I know but the more pleasure I get from it. Monty Don 
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