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Native trees and shrubs for sandy coastal soil


 
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CoillteÉire
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Location: Co. Dublin

PostPosted: Mon Jul 20, 2009 3:53 pm    Post subject: Native trees and shrubs for sandy coastal soil Reply with quote

Hi Very Happy
I was wondering if anyone might be able to help me here. I'm looking for native trees/shrubs that might be naturally suited to my area (dublin coast, probably within a mile from the bay).
I do know a bit about the conditions: we get a bit of a sea breeze (not too bad though); the soil is neutral and is mostly sandy: sand:silt:clay=3:1:1...roughly (I know that from a test I found on this site, so thanks to whoever posted it); the soil seems fairly well drained (as far as i can tell)... it's definitely not waterlogged anyway; I don't know about fertility but I think the bedrock is limestone (90% sure, but i only have fairly large scale maps on the internet to go by).
There's a bit of a woods near us but it's over half made up of Beech, Sycamore and Horse Chestnut. The native trees i've identified are: some Oak (not sure which type) but mostly Holly, Hawthorn, Elder and Ash (found it a bit difficult to distiguish between these last two without being right up close Embarassed ). I think there might be two or three Yew trees here and there but I didn't even know what a Yew tree was when they might have had flowers and they have no sign of berries yet, so it seems like they only way to identify them would be to get someone to nibble the leaves Wink . There might be other species suitable to the area that I just haven't identified yet.

I'm only starting off so any advice at all would be gratefully accepted.
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Sive
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PostPosted: Mon Jul 20, 2009 4:26 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

How about the magnificent Scots Pine ?
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JennyS
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PostPosted: Mon Jul 20, 2009 7:57 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

What sort of size garden or area of ground are you thinking of planting?
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Liparis
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PostPosted: Tue Jul 21, 2009 11:43 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Sea Buckthorn (Hippophae rhamnoides). Also some alternative medicinal uses and beauty products can be harvested.
Bill.

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CoillteÉire
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PostPosted: Wed Jul 22, 2009 12:53 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Thanks for the help everyone Smile
Our garden's about 80ft long and 20ft wide, but there are a few built structures (a roofed bench area, etc.) and a cabin/shed with foundations that go down a few feet and unfortunately prevent us from planting the Giants like Scots Pine or Oak, still it's good to know what to look out for in the woods and around the area in general. It's a pity about the Pine though because out of all the large conifers I've seen it has to be my favourite, it immediately reminds me of some primeval forest. Sea Buckthorn looks very suitable, and I'll have to look out for it next time I go down near the beach.
I was also thinking of planting a Hawthorn for the birds, but the maximum height seems surprisingly big. What size of space would it take to avoid needing to cut it back eventually - it could be planted right up to a hedge (south facing), would this prevent it spreading into the centre of the garden too much?
Thanks again for the help. Very Happy
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JennyS
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PostPosted: Wed Jul 22, 2009 10:32 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

One place to start would be to have a look at what's growing in the gardens around you and get some ideas of what you'd like from that.
If you come across plants you don't know post photo's on the forum, either in this thread or in the ID section.

Quote:
Sea Buckthorn (Hippophae rhamnoides). Also some alternative medicinal uses and beauty products can be harvested.


Be warned, Sea Buckthorn spreads and suckers like anything when it gets going........
Though it was originally planted in coastal area's to stabilise sand-dunes its now got completely out-of-hand in some places and is causing habitat wreckage!

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CoillteÉire
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PostPosted: Wed Jul 22, 2009 10:55 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Hmm... That Sea Buckthorn could cause a problem Confused .
I'll have a look around at what's growing in other gardens, but there won't be a huge amount to go on, as many of the gardens around here tend be very bare i.e. a gravel driveway with one lonesome palm or a large lawn with a small flower bed. There are a fair few posibilities though. I'll have to go on a reconnaisance mission soon Cool
Thanks for the advice Smile .
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JennyS
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PostPosted: Thu Jul 23, 2009 12:44 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Future Forests in Co.Cork do a lot of plants by mail order and I think they indicate in their printed catalogue what trees, shrubs and perennials are suitable for sandy and coastal area's.

Their website is here with plant lists and catalogue info though the bareroot season (for posting trees and shrubs) won't start until the autumn. http://www.futureforests.net

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Guelder
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PostPosted: Thu Jul 23, 2009 9:21 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

CoillteÉire wrote:

I'll have a look around at what's growing in other gardens, but there won't be a huge amount to go on, as many of the gardens around here tend be very bare i.e. a gravel driveway with one lonesome palm or a large lawn with a small flower bed. There are a fair few posibilities though. I'll have to go on a reconnaisance mission soon Cool
Thanks for the advice Smile .


I would pay more attention to what is growing in the hedges and woods (you seem to have already taken a note of this anyway) than what is in the gardens. you can stick a plant in the ground anywhere, but if it got there on its own it is a far better sign. You can always go for different (fancier!) varieties of the species you see.
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CoillteÉire
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PostPosted: Fri Jul 24, 2009 5:07 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Thanks for the info Smile
Had a look at the futureforests site. Apparently Gorse might be an option. On the woods side of things, i'm pretty sure i've found some Gorse on the side of a hill, also some Blackberry but these are both on some fairly public private ground (it's the grounds of a hotel but the area has always been used for walks etc. it's practically abandoned by them).
The question is would anyone plant Gorse or Blackberry? Question
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Guelder
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PostPosted: Tue Jul 28, 2009 4:49 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

CoillteÉire wrote:
Thanks for the info Smile
Had a look at the futureforests site. Apparently Gorse might be an option. On the woods side of things, i'm pretty sure i've found some Gorse on the side of a hill, also some Blackberry but these are both on some fairly public private ground (it's the grounds of a hotel but the area has always been used for walks etc. it's practically abandoned by them).
The question is would anyone plant Gorse or Blackberry? Question


Considered planting Gorse too. Fine in a corner that is mostly viewed from a distance, it would give you a nice splash of colour when in flower, but it can look a bit leggy and woody up close when it matures. Broom might be a better option.

As for Blackberries, they don't really have a structure or shape on their own. I wouldn't put them in, they'll probably arrive in anyway. if you leave a few wild patches around the edges. If you want a rambler that has a good wildlife value I'd go for one of the wild roses.

Can't beat a mixed hedge - hawthorn, blackthorn, hazel, dog roses, if you've room for a big hedge. If it is standalone trees you're after birches are nice as are mountain ash/rowan.

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