Request for help - suggestions for plants Thank you :)

Discussion in 'General Gardening Discussion' started by jude_and_lola, Dec 26, 2010.

  1. jude_and_lola

    jude_and_lola Apprentice Gardener

    Joined:
    Dec 26, 2010
    Messages:
    3
    Ratings:
    +0
    Hi all,

    I am a very new member and hope you will excuse me joining just to ask questions. I have been researching around for weeks (months) and thought it might be more effective to ask some experts!

    I am in my second year of an Masters degree, and work with textiles. I want to design/produce an outdoor piece of work that incorporates living plants. I have experimented with growing moss on flat vertical surfaces, and have researched vertical walls and other similar things but don't want to bore you/go on too much!

    Basically, I need help identifying a type of plant that will grow in cracks, perhaps with very little water - like the sort of gaps between bricks. I have found some info on sedum's, are these the most suitable?

    Sorry to be so demanding, I hope you don't think I am just looking for an easy answer or quick fix, have just gone round in quite a few circles looking for ideas!

    Many thanks, Jude and Lola (my dog!)
     
  2. Marley Farley

    Marley Farley Affable Admin! Staff Member

    Joined:
    May 11, 2005
    Messages:
    30,592
    Occupation:
    Grandmother Gardener Councillor Homemaker
    Location:
    Under the Edge Zone 8b
    Ratings:
    +14,095
    Request for help - suggestions for plants

    [​IMG] Jude & Lola of course.... :wink: I would start off with looking at the different species of Liverwort.. They grow prolifically in cracks, crevices & between stones.... They do like a certain amount of moisture though... Have a look here
    http://www.google.co.uk/images?q=liverwort+species&hl=en&client=firefox-a&hs=SFY&rls=org.mozilla:en-GB:official&prmd=ivns&cr=countryUK|countryGB&um=1&ie=UTF-8&source=og&sa=N&tab=wi&biw=1006&bih=576
    the 1st 3 pics are the most common.. After that google them.. :gnthb:
     
  3. pete

    pete Growing a bit of this and a bit of that....

    Joined:
    Jan 9, 2005
    Messages:
    30,893
    Gender:
    Male
    Occupation:
    joinery
    Location:
    Mid Kent
    Ratings:
    +36,421
    Request for help - suggestions for plants

    Gaps between bricks can mean a few different things.

    If its just mortar, then I think moss is the only answer, unless its very old and crumbly.

    The smaller sedums are ok but need atleast a bit of soil to get going as do Semperviviums, but once established, manage on almost nothing.
    Getting the plants established is likely to be the most difficult part.
     
  4. Phil A

    Phil A Gardener

    Joined:
    Jan 23, 2019
    Messages:
    46,066
    Ratings:
    +12
    Request for help - suggestions for plants

    Hi & Welcome to the forums,

    Ivy leaved toadflax would be a goer, the seed pods curl round until they find a crack in the wall to deposit a seed, gives good vertical coverage.

    Also pelitory of the wall and fumitory. These are all native British plants.

    You could consider a couple of ferns too, Rusty Back & Maiden Hair, oh i think there is another called Wall Rue.
     
  5. Tiarella

    Tiarella Optimistic Gardener

    Joined:
    Feb 19, 2007
    Messages:
    725
    Gender:
    Female
    Location:
    Romney Marsh
    Ratings:
    +120
    Request for help - suggestions for plants

    Wallflowers grow in cracks in walls and so does red valerian (otherwise known as centranthus). I've seen primroses growing on walls in the West Country too.
     
  6. Victoria

    Victoria Lover of Exotic Flora

    Joined:
    Jun 9, 2006
    Messages:
    19,446
    Occupation:
    Lady of Leisure
    Location:
    Portugal
    Ratings:
    +10,279
    Request for help - suggestions for plants

    :) Hello Jude and Lola ...

    If there is a smidgen of soil in these cracks you mention, how about Thyme or even Aubretia?
     
  7. jude_and_lola

    jude_and_lola Apprentice Gardener

    Joined:
    Dec 26, 2010
    Messages:
    3
    Ratings:
    +0
    Request for help - suggestions for plants

    Hello all, thank you so much for all the replies, I really do appreciate it!

    I am working through all the suggestions and will let you know which one/one I go with.

    In theory I will be exhibiting my work in August, so will need to be planting springtime to allow enough time to grow. My work will most likely be on an existing brick wall, or something similar that I construct myself so the cracks will either be normal mortar or whatever I chose to put in there, if that makes sense. I am at the research stage at the moment so everything is quite loose and flexible - which is why I am grateful for all the suggestions!

    Thanks again, Jude and Lola :)
     
  8. Phil A

    Phil A Gardener

    Joined:
    Jan 23, 2019
    Messages:
    46,066
    Ratings:
    +12
    Request for help - suggestions for plants

    You'd be better off with a lime mortar rather than cement, much softer & the plants can take to it better. Have a look at my website below, click on samples of work & then click the slideshow, the brick wall is pointed with lime and already had ivy leaved toadflax growing on it. You can see the plant clearer under the green man corbel.
     
  9. theruralgardener

    theruralgardener Gardener

    Joined:
    Jul 22, 2009
    Messages:
    392
    Location:
    Otley, West Yorks
    Ratings:
    +149
    Request for help - suggestions for plants

    Sounds interesting Jude.
    How long will you need the exhibit to look good and will it be indoors? From a practical point of view, it might be sensible to consider this when looking at options.
    Moss, liverworts and ferns would give good textural qualities, but might not be at their best in August.
    Mind your own business, Soleirolia soleirolia might be an idea? I have seen it running from cracks in a patio and spreading vertically up lower walls nearby?
    I'm sure you will be familiar with Patrick Blanc's work? Makes you think you could do ANYTHING you wanted.
    Sedums and Sempervivums as well as cushion forming alpine plants? Good luck.
     
  10. jude_and_lola

    jude_and_lola Apprentice Gardener

    Joined:
    Dec 26, 2010
    Messages:
    3
    Ratings:
    +0
    Hello again

    Thank you to everyone replied to my original message, I am very very grateful and used all your suggestions to help with my work.

    I need to start thinking about growing a crop of things I can plant into the pieces that I will be making and putting into an exhibition in August this year. I am not a particularly experienced gardener - I know bits and bobs and can be pretty practical, but I have a few questions that I would be eternally grateful if anyone could answer!

    • Where would I get some ivy leaved toadflax/liverworts from if I wanted to grow them (i have some of the toadflax in my garden, could I just take a cutting?
    • When would be the best time to start something like this off? Does it need to be indoors?
    • If I wanted to plant some toadflax into cracks in a wall at a later date - is that possible - and should I just grow it in small pots and transplant later?
    I know my questions might sound a bit silly/random, but I really would appreciate advice from experts or people with more experience/knowledge.

    Thank you all again for your advice!
     
  11. Phil A

    Phil A Gardener

    Joined:
    Jan 23, 2019
    Messages:
    46,066
    Ratings:
    +12
    Hi,

    Ivy Leaved Toadflax is best transplanted, as its very delicate & I don't know if cuttings would work, mind you they do with busy lizzies so might be worth a try. If you grow it in situ, then the plant will have a chance to spread by its self rather than leaving it till the last minute & then finding that transplants have failed.

    Liverworts grow in damp places, you often get them as a freebie when you buy well watered plants from a garden centre. In fact, I didn't look at what daughter was buying in pots last year & one of the flowers had died & she had just bought the remaining liverwort:DOH:

    If you want to propagate liverworts then you will need to keep it very damp.
     
  12. miraflores

    miraflores Total Gardener

    Joined:
    Apr 16, 2006
    Messages:
    5,485
    Location:
    mean daily minimum temperatures -1 -2
    Ratings:
    +2,390
    [size=large]In warm and dry climates I guess you would find quite a lot of plants that would find sufficient a little sand between two stones to grow.[/size]
     
  13. clueless1

    clueless1 member... yep, that's what I am:)

    Joined:
    Jan 8, 2008
    Messages:
    17,778
    Gender:
    Male
    Location:
    Here
    Ratings:
    +19,582
    I've always liked the look of Biting Stonecrop for the role you describe, but I've never grown it (yet). Here it is:

    http://www.plantpress.com/wildlife/o623-bitingstonecrop.php
     
  14. Phil A

    Phil A Gardener

    Joined:
    Jan 23, 2019
    Messages:
    46,066
    Ratings:
    +12

    Good call Dave:dbgrtmb:

    I've always loved those. Very drought tolerant.
     
Loading...

Share This Page

  1. This site uses cookies to help personalise content, tailor your experience and to keep you logged in if you register.
    By continuing to use this site, you are consenting to our use of cookies.
    Dismiss Notice