Blank canvas

help needed pease, I'm fairly new to gardening and am looking for some ideas..I have an area at the back of my garden, it's roughly 2metres by 3 metres and covered in concrete. It gets sun most of the day but has some tall trees overhead. Does anybody have any suggestions for what I could put into pots that will give colour for as much of the year as possible..

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  • hogweedhogweed Central ScotlandPosts: 3,726

    Which part of the country are you in? Are you down in the milder south or up here in the rainswept north?

    'Optimism is the faith that leads to achievement' - Helen Keller
  • Yensid2009Yensid2009 Posts: 18

    I'd like to say the milder south hogweed, although it's definatey rainswept today

  • paulk2paulk2 Posts: 184

    Hi Peter. There are lots of sun loving plants that would suit and I'm sure others on the forum will come up with more suggestions. You might want to go for a mix of perennial plants for year round interest plus some annuals for big hitting colours. A mix of pot sizes would also be a good idea so you get various planting heights  which is more pleasing to the eye.

    I've got 3x Salvia 'Hot Lips' [do a google image search for it], each in their own 30cm pots and they have flowered continuously for weeks and appear to be continuing to carry on doing more of the same. Mine are on a south facing patio and they like it warm and dryish. They are a couple of years old and are about 2 feet high and 2 feet spread. The leaves smell nice too. Herbs would also be good. Do you like lavender?

  • Yensid2009Yensid2009 Posts: 18

    Thanks paulk2, the Silvia Hot Lips are beautiful, a definate addition I think. Like the idea of different sized pots and height of flowers too. I have some poppy seeds which I may try to sow too. Love herbs also. 

  • paulk2paulk2 Posts: 184

    Forgot to mention edibles as well: soft fruits like strawberries, gooseberries, etc, grow well in pots. As you would be growing in pots, you can control the soil acidity/alkalinity more easily than in the ground: thinking blueberries here if you like those, grown in ericaceous compost. You can also make the soil more free-draining if you need to by adding grit, etc, for alpine plants. For long term plants in pots, you would need to grow things in John Innes soil based composts rather than multi-purpose.

    A good thing about growing in pots is that if you have a bit of room elsewhere, you can move things in and out of prominent positions as they come and go. For instance you could start with daffodils and tulips in the early season, then replace them with something else you've been growing, etc, etc, all through the year. If you have really big pots, you can sink smaller pots into them while they do their stuff and then swap them for something else a bit later.

    A bad thing about growing in pots is remembering to water, feed and not to over-water!

  • Yensid2009Yensid2009 Posts: 18

    Thank you so much paulk2, amazing ideas. Think I'm going to get some acears, definitely the Silvia Hot Lips you suggested, and I quite like the idea of blueberries and/or some other fruits or herbs. Hopefully plenty of colour will fill the drab looking space. Many thanks again, I shall let you know how I get on. 

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