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What can I grow here?

Hi,any suggestions what tall plants I can put behind this peony and frog?


It will be in the shade on the pic below






Fairly dry soil but last nights downpour did get to it, the trees will take most of it I think.

nothing has been tried in that spot before, the trees used to be full of leaves to the ground.

all pics taken in full sun.

would prefer not to spend a fortune on this area (although can always be persuaded). 




  • Busy-LizzieBusy-Lizzie Posts: 22,631

    It looks as though it could be pretty dry under that tree. If it's ground cover that's not too invasive and looks quite neat then what about epimedium? It flowers very early so it would be more for leaves than flowers, but it can cope with dryness.

     I have 3 sorts including this yellow one (this is Google, not mine) to give you an idea.

    Dordogne and Norfolk. Clay in Dordogne, sandy in Norfolk.
  • Busy-LizzieBusy-Lizzie Posts: 22,631

    Now I've just looked back and seen you've asked for a tall plant, bother, it's not very tall.

    Dordogne and Norfolk. Clay in Dordogne, sandy in Norfolk.
  • MrsGardenMrsGarden Posts: 3,951

    Thanks BL, I might use it somewhere else but yes I'd like to see it behind the peony, not too worried if it doesn't flower.

  • chickychicky Posts: 10,394

    Fairygirl was talking about fatsias earlier today - they are happy in shade, and can get quite tall.  No flowers, but look good all year round.

  • MrsGardenMrsGarden Posts: 3,951

    Verdun you never disappoint, will look some of suggestions up. Have some sort of phormium but wouldn't be tall enough. Lily sounds very nice. Not got a clue what the others are! Are they tall grasses? (knowing you!) I  think id like that as don't have any yet and theyd have room to spread.

    Chicky I have also just planted ( and posted) my new fatsia to left of this site so could move it along now or later.

    Still a bit concerned about the lack of light.1). if there was a suitable 'standard' would that help the light as would reach the leaves better, then underplanting may be easier.2). I suppose I could move the peony 3). Would there be enough light before the peony grows to help the new plant?

    Sorry I couldn't think how to get my thoughts across, hope you get an idea of what I mean - probably over worrying and over thinking. 

    thank you x

  • MrsGardenMrsGarden Posts: 3,951

    Really like the sound of a grass, yes the peony flowers well, less so this year but I think its due for thought was if the light gets 'behind' the peony. Are they also evergreen, not at all essential but would be seen from the house in winter.

    So at GC tomorrow im looking for miscanthus varigatus? whiteish to complement dark corner, fountainlike to look stunning. And flowers in autumn! Wow sounds perfect.

    A pic would be fab, pleeease....

  • FairygirlFairygirl Posts: 53,966

    I'd agree that grasses would be good there and will give you the height you're after MrsG. Chick mentioned the Fatsias but I think they might find it too dry with the other planting  competing for moisture but if you have it in a similar spot just now it's worth trying -you can always move it if it struggles. Phormiums would do well I'd think - the common green and purple ones get up to a good height - 5/6' or more usually. image

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

    I live in west central Scotland - not where that photo is...
  • MrsGardenMrsGarden Posts: 3,951

    Thanks Fg, I will leave fatsia in place for now. Also didn't realise my phormium will grow so tall, but its good to do that where it is in the 'crucible'.

    cornus dogwood also in resrve for nearby spot in pic where there's some sun.

    Can't wait to get to GC this pm to find a grass!

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