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ideas for raised beds -new garden

Hi All,

we have finally got round to sorting out some raised beds in our garden, house is a new build so we are starting from scratch. The garden is v wide, not long, so we have had some brick raised beds put in along the back fence and a pergola. I was just wondering if anyone has any recommendations for plants for the beds. Garden is south west facing so gets the sun. Ideally I would like some colour all year round and perennials that will flower for a few years. I also want to try and grow plants that hide the fence, which is quite wide. Then have some smaller ones growing over the raised wall. I'm also looking for the best clematis to grow over the pergola. Would a be able to grow this in a pot? Any advice, ideas welcome. Totally new at this gardening lark, but kind of excited too. 





  • DovefromaboveDovefromabove Posts: 85,989

    Hi Helen - could you post us some pictures of the beds and pergola please - then we'll get a better idea of your options image

    Click on the green tree icon on the toolbar ...

    Gardening in Central Norfolk on improved gritty moraine over chalk ... free-draining.

  • GardenmaidenGardenmaiden Posts: 1,126

    Can't go wrong with geraniums. They come in all sizes and colour of flower and leaf.

    Phlomis, in yellow, pink or violet. Birds like the seeds and provide winter interest.

    Cornus (dogwood) small white flowers, then berries and then the leaves fall off and you have coloured stems in red, orange, yellow, green, brown, black, depending on the variety.

  • Nanny BeachNanny Beach Posts: 8,586

     Helenita   First off, get yourself a soil testing kit. You can see with your fingers if it is clay, chalk, sand, loam.  A lot of plants will grow in any of these soils.  =A lot of clematis will grow in pots, too many to mention, just have a look online see what colours you like. They do like their roots kept cool.   I put a black metal arch up over a bench this year, have got a pale pink climbing rose (new dawn) one side honeysuckle (serotina) the other in pots, because its on the grass.  Passion flower, lots of different colours, fast growing look nice in pots over pergolas, or in the ground over a fence to cover.  Too late this year, but next spring, Morning glory, black eyed susan, annual fast growing climbers.Have a look at the RHS site, put in your soil type, then sun, shade etc. it will give suggestions.  Very difficult to give suggestions, because we all have our favorites!  You might hate them!

  • Thanks for the replies! Much appreciated. Dovefromabove here are some pics of beds and pergola, just quite basic nothing fancy. We had to keep a lot of grass as we have a little girl who loves running around on it! There is another raised bed at side of pergola. 





  • FairygirlFairygirl Posts: 53,918

    Great opportunity Helenita image

    When you say south west facing - did you mean the house? If so - the raised beds will technically  be north east facing, with a bit of sun coming in from the 'sides' if you're not overshadowed by any buildings etc. 

    You'll be able to put a good variety of things in them anyway. Clematis can be planted in the end of your raised beds and trained up the fence and over the pergola, so that won't be an issue. Better - and easier - than keeping them in pots. image

    Have you an idea of colours you like or style of planting?

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

    I live in west central Scotland - not where that photo is...
  • Thanks Fairygirl , good idea about clematis. I think you're right, garden is south facing so beds would be the other way. They do get they sun but become shaded later in afternoon. I am clueless! I was thinking of pink, purple and white as main colour scheme. And do want some all year round greenery so it doesn't look totally bare in winter. also would like some tall-ish plants to hide fence and to make it feel like we are in the countryside, imageimage! wishfull thinking I know! 

  • FairygirlFairygirl Posts: 53,918

    It's always best to wait a bit and see what's what  image

    You'll probably find one end gets a bit more sun than the other but it doesn't mean you can't use some repeat planting as many shrubs and perennials will be happy in a bit of sun or a bit of shade. If you have windows that you regularly look out of onto the space, then try and have a bit of evergreen planting there with spring bulbs to cheer you up when spring seems a long way away.

    I have a long narrow border along my back fence which is  mainly evergreens. It's north west facing - and gets a little afternoon sun at this time of year, complete shade from October to about April. I use Heucheras, Tiarellas, Pachysandra and native primulas for the main groundcover, and astilbes and Japanese anemones  for a bit of height. I have Osmanthud burkwoodii at one end which is evergreen and has scented white flowers in spring. I also use Lonicera nitida for height as well, which I just trim now and again. Loads of snowdrops, crocus, narcissus and wild rocket  tucked in as well. In areas which are brighter, evergreens like Hebes make good structural shrubs, and I have Euonymous and phormiums for contrast, with clematis on the fence behind. Loads of bulbs including alliums for summer. Pasqueflowers and Hellebores are nice for late winter/spring. My beds are purples, whites and soft yellows with brighter yellows in spring, but I also have shocking pink Dianthus in pots.

    That will give you a few ideas to look at but you'll get loads more ideas from everyone here.  image

    Just a thought re planting clematis or any other climber for your pergola. You can plant into the gravel areas either side as well, unless there's concrete or anything there. As it's a new property, the chances are that the soil will be pretty poor so if you do that, just add plenty of compost/soil/farmyard manure into the area first. Most climbers need a good bit of nutrition to perform at their best. image

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

    I live in west central Scotland - not where that photo is...
  • Fab! Thanks so much Fairygirl! That's great! Will be drawing up a list to take to the garden centre! So good to have a bit of advice, we don't want to do it and then realise we should have planted others instead and have to start again!

    Much appreciated x
  • Beaus MumBeaus Mum Posts: 3,550

    Perfect time to get all the bulbs fairy suggests so you can get them in first before you get planting the rest image lovely blank canvas and look forward to what you choose 

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