Another odd sort of week with sunshine and fog and varying temperatures! I have been working on the new section of the gravel garden, planting some new plants and emptying all my spring bulb containers. That was a horrid job and nearly every container had a mass of slugs hiding at the bottom. Most very small, but one or two yucky big ones. I found that the plastic containers were the worst and the wettest despite crocks at the bottom to assist drainage. The tulip bulbs in those pots were mostly rotten too, so I have concluded that to keep tulips in containers to re-flower you need to use terracotta or glazed pots. Anything in plastic should be composted or planted into the ground pretty much when finished flowering.
So on to the project which began in 2017.
Just so that you get the idea of the changes this is how the garden looked in May 2016 with the rather large flat rock in the lawn area. The lawn area is about 10m x 5m so not big.
There has been a lot of turf removal over the past five years – you can see some of the progress of the gravel garden here
(1) Getting Started
So what newbies have arrived in the gravel garden?
(2) Geums – three new ones from East Lambrook Manor (Somerset), but only two planted here in full sun. Geum ‘Karlskaer’ has vibrant orange flowers from May – August and Geum ‘Redwings’ has rich red semi-double flowers in early summer and again later on in the year. Geum ‘Emory Quinn’ is a compact variety with golden-yellow flowers from May – September and enjoys partial shade. That has been planted in the dappled shade bed.
(3) Several plants from Beth Chatto nursery including two grasses – Calamagrostis brachytricha and Calamagrostis x acutiflora ‘Overdam’ and a Gaura lindheimeri to create an open, airy feel. No photos yet as they are new plants.
(4) Two new Aeoniums from the Surreal Succulents Nursery down the road from me plus a few other odds and sods which will remain in their pots so they can hide indoors over winter – not so much from the cold as from the wet.
(5) Erodium x variabile ‘Bishop’s Form’– this one is from the Bodmin Herb Nursery and has been flowering his socks off since May. Fingers crossed he survives the winter. Currently next to a rather pretty Pittosporum tenuifolium ‘Golden Ball’ which may have to be moved.
(6) You may have noticed that there are already lots of things planted around this flat rock. A couple of Carex grasses, Rosemary, Olearia Haastii which is just about to come into flower, a blue Geranium ‘Orion’ and Sedum or Stonecrop ‘Ruby Glow’ which I hope will creep even further into the gravel now. And by the more upright rocks are Penstemons and a large Fuchsia. All of these started off quite small (many as cuttings) but now they are beginning to fill out.
Next job is to return to the nursery for more pebbles and cobbles so I can finish off this area. And then I can rest. For a while anyway.
As always, if you want a peek over other people’s garden walls then please pop over to our host, the lovely Jon, AKA ‘The Propagator’ where you find links to many more wonderful garden enthusiasts from all over the world.
See here for the participant’s guide.