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My sad garden - needs life!


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bluebelldell
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PostPosted: Wed Sep 01, 2010 10:21 pm    Post subject: My sad garden - needs life! Reply with quote

Hi all, new here and need some help and advice. My back garden has been allowed to get completely overgrown and this year was almost totally overtaken with bindweed. About 6-8 week ago I donned some wellies, gritted my teeth and began the tedious job of ridding the place of this scourge before it joined us for dinner in the kitchen.

Anyway much to my surprise I found myself, after a few days, loving the physical work I was doing, going from having to sit down every 5 minutes to rest to now spending hours digging, weeding, painting...etc.

NOW, I know there's a very long way to go but honestly, while you wouldn't know it from the photos I've attached I am so proud of what's been done and continues to be done (though you wouldn't know it)

But now dilemma time, this week I will finish the left side of the garden, including the painting of the wall on this side, and adding the edging all they way down but I just don't know what I should be planting if anything....the soil has been well dug more than once, in fact that's what I seem to be doing a lot, re-digging, as I know that pesky bindweed may still be lurking underground, should I just plant things or just continue to de-weed until spring time?

I want a perennial border, and i love greenery, heathers, grasses, shrubs.
I want some type of climber for the fence at the end and a tree somewhere near there also, perhaps something with a white blossom that won't grow too big. I think I am afraid to start.

I have tons of plans for the space but I know they will take time as I have to work on a tight budget - in fact if anyone knows where to get good value in shrubs and seeds please let me know.

I have added photos, ignore the "lawn" for the moment, that's for the future., Wink and if someone could tell me what to begin to start putting in and where I'd be grateful.

Oh and quantities, like do I put three of the same plant, shrub in together? or not? or space them all along the wall?

The soil is very slightly alkaline, but only slightly, and the garden is north facing, the left wall gets the sun the right wall is partly shaded.
looking forward to some suggestions, sorry for long post!

Progressing nicely here.


more recent.
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mralgae
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PostPosted: Thu Sep 02, 2010 1:13 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

hi and welcome aboard. firstly a link here about bindweed for you...

http://www.gardenplansireland.com/forum/about95.html

i was in similar position when we moved in Feb this yr and had a bare garden to work from.
see before and after pics below. it has changed again since but gives a rough idea.

http://www.gardenplansireland.com/forum/about4117.html

if you have a woodies close by give them a go for cheap plants. i have had loads of cheapies which they have been selling off because they were not in great condition and have only lost one of them which was only 50c any way.

your coming into the time to start planting soon for next years bulbs etc or even daffs and crocus at the end of summer. even on your shaded side you can plant the likes of petunia, foxgloves etc hosta, or even coleuswhich do well in shade. see coleus here....
http://www.google.ie/images?hl=en&q=coleus&um=1&ie=UTF-8&source=og&sa=N&tab=wi&biw=1024&bih=651

now is the time to start ordering as delivery will start in sept for the bulbs etc. you certainly have a good range to choose from.


happy gardening and keep us posted with more pics....we love pics...Smile

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artalis
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PostPosted: Thu Sep 02, 2010 7:34 am    Post subject: new planting Reply with quote

Hi bluebelldell,
You have discovered that gardening is therapeutic but it is also addictive lol.

North facing gardens are more suitable to cooler plantings and partial shade to shade loving plants. The sunny side will take plantings that like slightly warmer conditions and more light.

If you start with young plugs or young trees and shrubs it should be cheaper. You just need a bit of patience to let them grow. Bare rooted shrubs and trees are usually cheaper and take to the soil faster if planted correctly. Cuttings from the gardens of friends and neighbours is also a saving way to start a garden for next to nothing.

Heathers like acid soil, so check your soil ph first before starting. But if your soil is unsuitable for heathers you can always grow some in a container, filled with some ericacious compost and soil.

Tree choice and more things to consider
For tree size, first check the width of your garden and also the soil type. Some fast growing varieties could grow 80ft high and that's not what you want. Other trees may only grow 15 ft or so over 10 yrs, but they may also grow 15ft wide. That's alot of shade in a small garden and will restrict what plants you can grow under the tree. Soils can be either chalky, acid, alkaline or loamy etc Some trees will only do well on a specific soil type. Also check whether a tree is hardy or tender, resistant to wind or needing shelter.Evergreen or deciduous? A tree that sheds its' leaves in winter, will cast less of a shadow on a short dull day, but an evergreen or winter blooming tree will be pleasant to see, when the rest of the garden is bare in winter.Also consider standard dwarf trees, which will remain very small.A good garden nursery should be able to advise you on tree choice.

The same approach applies to the rest of the garden; consider soil ph, hardiness, position, year round interest.

An ok approach to working out your garden layout is to choose a group of perennials ( plus your tree choice) or evergreens as the main framework of the garden, Add the rest afterwards eg bulbs, annuals, more perennials, climbers.etc

Don't forget to plan for practicalities also, like any need for storage, a washing line, shed/greenhouse, paths etc. It's best to get the hard landscaping out of the way first before planting.

Hope you enjoy your new venture, watching things grow as you go. Let us know how you get on.

artalis Very Happy

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bluebelldell
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PostPosted: Tue Sep 07, 2010 8:00 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Thanks for replies, very helpful and seeing other similar shaped gardens is great also. I've continued digging and establishing border/beds around the whole garden, using the log roll as a divider, but still haven't planted anything yet.

I was thinking of a holly hedge at the back fence, it's one of my favourites and takes me right back to my childhood, where it grew wildly in the wood near my home, anyone know if there's any problem with it? I would also like to plant woodbine/honeysuckle to grow up through it if possible.

also another question, understandably it's going to take time to grow and establish a garden but i was thinking of sowing some bulbs and flower seeds now for spring flowering, but is it too late? any replies appreciated. thanks in advance.
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Sive
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PostPosted: Tue Sep 07, 2010 9:37 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Perfect time to plant bulbs now !
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mralgae
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PostPosted: Tue Sep 07, 2010 10:39 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

as sive said good time for planting bulbs now for next spring. everything you want to plant will take time to establish and flourish, but if you want color over the winter the likes of cyclmans will do this for you. also suttons seeds and the likes are offering winter sets that will color through untill spring when the bulbs should be coming through for you. then you can start with your summer seeds to go in after spring.
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cuemaster
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PostPosted: Wed Sep 08, 2010 8:12 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Hi
Aldi are selling spring bulbs tomorrow in the specials, could be a good time to spent a little cash and get what you want
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artalis
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PostPosted: Wed Sep 08, 2010 11:53 am    Post subject: more bulbs pleeeze Reply with quote

Hi,

This will cheer you up with some things to look forward to even though winter is around the corner.


http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=kO53r-lMjxE

You can have year round interest with garden bulbs. A tip when planting is to put some sharp sand into the base of the planting hole as this assists with drainage. Most bulbs will rot if waterlogged. Building a raised bed will also assist with drainage and if organic matter and compost is added to the soil mixture, most bulbs and garden plants will get off to a good start. Bulbs look best when planted in loose groups perhaps amongst low growing perennials or alpines. For a more formal effect, they are sometimes planted en masse along paths or in beds.

To give an idea of year round interest and flowering periods see>

Early spring and late winter bloomers include; Dwarf Iris, Snowdrops, Crocus, Glory of the Snow, Winter Aconite, Scilla Siberica

Spring flowering; Muscari, Hyacinth, Daffodil, Allium, Snake Head Fritillary,Tulip, Anemone Blanda, Puschikinia

Summer/Late Summer/Autumn; Eremerus, Begonia, Agapanthus, Gladiola, Autumn crocus, Zantedeschia, Ranuncules, Dahlia, Oriental Lily

Late Autumn/Early and late winter; Cyclamen, Snowdrop, Nerine

artalis Smile

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bluebelldell
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PostPosted: Wed Sep 08, 2010 6:26 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

this is all great advice - i was in B&Q earlier and they have quite a selection of various bulbs also so picked some up - haven't planted them yet, when is the absolute last week to plant bulbs?

Also, sorry for all the questions but I was thinking is there a way of grouping them or not? I was half thinking of putting all the bulbs into a large container together mix them up and plant whatever comes out randomly or should they be planted by species in groups of threes or fives together?

thanks again!
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cuemaster
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PostPosted: Wed Sep 08, 2010 9:21 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

If you want to grow veg try www.giyireland.com, there should be a group near you and I'm sure they'll have info on plants as well
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artalis
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PostPosted: Wed Sep 08, 2010 9:42 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

bluebelldell wrote:
this is all great advice - i was in B&Q earlier and they have quite a selection of various bulbs also so picked some up - haven't planted them yet, when is the absolute last week to plant bulbs?

Also, sorry for all the questions but I was thinking is there a way of grouping them or not? I was half thinking of putting all the bulbs into a large container together mix them up and plant whatever comes out randomly or should they be planted by species in groups of threes or fives together?

thanks again!


Check the correct planting depth for each type of bulb and stick with that. Cover deeper planted bulbs with soil/compost and plant shallower bulbs in the new layer above at the correct depth. It is possible to have three or four layers of bulbs in one pot, but make it a deep pot, with plenty of organic matter/compost, slow release fertiliser and some sharp sand/stones in the bottom of the pot to assist with drainage. Cover the top of the soil with a thick mulch of stones, or bark or whatever to help protect against frost. Make sure to site your bulbs in the right soil and position. Planting the bulbs fairly close together will get more dramatic results, but again follow the spacing guide on the front or back of the bulb packet.

artalis Very Happy



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artalis
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PostPosted: Thu Sep 09, 2010 9:43 am    Post subject: bulbs Reply with quote

Check the thread on planting bulbs, for more in depth info' written by James. Here's the link.


http://www.gardenplansireland.com/forum/about303.html


artalis Very Happy

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artalis
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PostPosted: Tue Oct 05, 2010 8:25 am    Post subject: Cheap climbers Reply with quote

Tesco's are selling a nice range of climbers just now at 3euros each, including honeysuckle, hedera and. passiflora.

Now is also a good time to catch end of season bargains in garden centres; my local has a few trolley loads at half price.

artalis Smile

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bluebelldell
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PostPosted: Thu Mar 24, 2011 7:30 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Hi Folks, isn't' the weather great? I'm back again with some questions, I was at the garden center today and I bought some "handy 6 packs" of lupins, I am wondering if it's better to plant them all together or spread about the flower beds. I got 6 lavender plants too and I'm wondering if i do the same with them.
any advice appreciated!
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Sive
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PostPosted: Thu Mar 24, 2011 9:55 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Lupins will eventually form quite big clumps, so each one will make quite a feature....personally I would spread them around a bit, and let them develop over a year or two.
Lavender looks great when grown together.. it just depends if you have the right spot.
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