To appreciate the value of ground cover plants you must forget the over-groomed garden with its several square inches of weed-free soil
round every plant, and consider instead the ways of nature. In a meadow, every bit of soil is covered, yet there is a tremendous variety of plants. In lightly dappled copses or at the edges of dense forest, plants carpet the ground.
If Read more ...
This brings us to water features and water garden ponds made from 'found' containers. Here the choice is endless. From baths at one end of the scale to an upturned dustbin lid at the other, almost any container can be adapted for use in water gardening
. Some can be left above ground but they can also be sunk into the ground to look like a normal pool. Once again, Read more ...
Slightly-raised flower beds
give a more effective display of the plants and, if cut out of grass, provide a decent clean sharp edge. So, assuming there is no need to lift the turf, this can be dug in and chopped up as the job proceeds. Add rotted manure, old potting soil
or compost and, as the job proceeds, turn the soil to the centre to create a trench so that after the first Read more ...
If you have only a small garden and if you really want your hedge for nothing more than a border between your plot and the next, think in terms of some pretty flowering hedging
plant which will help you decorate the house indoors as well as out.
Roses are ideal. Strong growers can be used as boundary hedges. If you keep pegging long trails down into the ground, Read more ...
Shelter Your Window Flower Boxes / Garden Containers from Weather Conditions
One of the main problems in caring for outdoor container plants is the effect of the wind, particularly with window flower boxes and garden containers
on open balconies, as in a block of flats. Sometimes a shelter can be arranged with glass or transparent plastic panels, or trellis. The latter Read more ...
The Mediterranean fig is a member of the Moraceae family. It is a very decorative plant with beautiful foliage consisting of large, deeply lobed leaves. In addition, it produces fruit and is very easy to look after. The flowers
that appear in spring are rather inconspicuous. Originally, pollination was ensured by gall-wasps but nowadays most varieties are self-pollinating. Read more ...
Fatsia (Araliaceae), an evergreen shrub, is native to Japan and Korea where it grows up to 5 m (16 ft) high. There are also slower growing varieties such as ‘Variegata’ for instance, which are ideal as container plants. It has particularly attractive glossy, leathery, palmate leaves that can be up to 40 cm (16 in) long. The small, white flowers
are borne in autumn in clusters, Read more ...
Exochorda x macrantha
The most famous variety of this deciduous shrub, a member of the Rosaceae family, is ‘The Bride’. It is a spreading shrub with arching branches whose height and spread can exceed 2 m (6 ft 6 in). Its slow growth and prolific flowering even as a young plant make it a very popular container plant.
The striking white flowers
that are borne in spring Read more ...
Euryops is a member of the aster family (Asteraceae) and native to South Africa where it grows as a small evergreen shrub or semi-shrub. Unlike its relative the marguerite or Paris daisy (Argyranthemum), the yellow flower heads are produced from spring to late summer. To ensure a profusion of flowers
it needs a warm, sunny position where it is protected from the wind. Read more ...
This evergreen shrub belonging to the spindle family [Celastraceae) is native to Japan and Korea where it can reach a height of 8 m(26 ft). The greenish flowers
that appear in spring are followed by striking pink fruits containing orange seeds. The glossy leathery leaves are dark green and marked with white or yellow depending on the variety. Japanese spindles Read more ...
The burning bush or winged spindle, a deciduous tree and member of the celestraceae family, is native to east Asia. It is a densely-branched, spreading shrub growing up to 3 m (10 ft) high and wide. The greenish-yellow flowers
that appear in spring are quite inconspicuous but the green leaves turn a fiery red in autumn. The spindle tree ‘Red Cascade’ (E. Read more ...
belong to the Hyacinthanceae family and are native to South Africa. The 30 cm (12 in) long leaves are oblong with a wavy margin. The greenish-yellow flowers with purple edges are borne on tall spikes of about 60 cm (24 in), crowned by a cluster of green, leaf-like bracts. The pineapple flower needs a sunny, warm position. As soon as the leaves Read more ...
The evergreen gum tree species are native to Tasmania and Australia where they can be found almost everywhere from the wet coastal regions to the dry desert areas. Their size ranges from small shrubs to gigantic trees. E. gunnii is an extremely popular species because it tolerates temperatures as low as -15° C (5° F). It is a fast-growing tree that can be cut back Read more ...
This undemanding shrub is native to South America where it grows as a shrub or small tree. The striking scarlet-red flowers
that are borne in summer in long terminal spikes on the arching branches stand out beautifully against the background of the large, blue-green leaves. The plant thrives in a sunny, warm position, preferably south-facing. In summer, Read more ...
The tree heath, a member of the evergreen ericaceae family, is native to southern Europe and east Africa where it can grow to fairly tall tree. The fragrant grey-white flowers
, borne in dense terminal clusters, appear in spring. Because of its small, needle-like leaves, the plant does not transpire much, which means that it does not mind prolonged periods of drought. Read more ...
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