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New to gardening and need help!!

Hi all,

I'm new to gardening and like the idea of growing my own veg and having a nice flower border and containers. My problem is my garden is 8m x 8m and mainly laid to lawn. The soil is very moist all year round due to bad drainage and it is shady most of day.

What can I grow, if anything?!!

Please help, any ideas greatfully received! 


  • happymarionhappymarion Posts: 4,591

    It cannot be healthy living so near such dampness, so could you not get the drainage problem fixed?

  • Irene MacIrene Mac Posts: 23
    Did you resolve your drainage problem? Every hole I've dug this winter has filled with water. As its drying I'm digging deep ditches around the edge of the garden and one under where my path will go, about a foot deep by a foot wide. I'm filling these with the stones that I find ( my soil is full of stones) but if I run short i'll buy some pea shingle, line the trench then fill it in) the idea is that the water should go into these field drains. If its reall bad then in the lowest corner dig an even deeper hole (a soak away) and have your trenches leading to it. Mine is really bad with a very high water table so I'm going to put a porous pipe in the trench under my path. It will just gentle slope down to the deep hole at the end of the garden. A piece oforous weed suppressing membrane on top of the stones isn't essential but will help keep the spaces between the stones free. If the trenches are too much, it's worth finding the lowest corner and digging a huge hole and just filling that with stones to act as a soak away. I've dug a few trenches (hard work as I have a muscular problem) but they're still full of water at the moment so will finish it when the weather permits. It's like Venice out there. With the earth that coming out of the trenches I'm making raised beds with railway sleepers for those plants that cannot tolerate wet feet. All the best. It's such hard work but it will be oh so worth it.
  • Irene MacIrene Mac Posts: 23
    Spell checker!! It should be porous weed suppressing membrane. That what I lined the trench with too letting the water still soak through but stopping muck from getting into the stones. A bit of over kill but I want to do this once. I bought the stuff on eBay so wasn't too expensive.
  • Irene MacIrene Mac Posts: 23
    Sorry. Should then have said you can grow anything you like. The beauty of gardening is things want to grow. If you don't have the best conditions they'll maybe not do as well as someone who has spent years adding compost and fertiliser to their soil. It's like going to the gym for the first time. Don't be put off by those that can run marathons. You have to put in the time but it will constantly reward you.
  • WintersongWintersong Posts: 2,436

    Here here Irene Mac and what a lot of work you have! Poor you, but as you say, all that work now will allow your dreams to materialise.image

    Piccys in the Garden Gallery thread when you see results image

  • Irene MacIrene Mac Posts: 23
    Pictures from garden or hospital bed! That is actually a good idea for newbies to do as I have loads of befores, during and afters of my previous gardens. I have left beautiful gardens sadly but know these people are enjoying sitting out in the sunshine admiring my flowers.
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