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suggestions for border growing in sandy Kent soil

Discussion in 'General Gardening Discussion' started by Floyd, Jul 23, 2010.

  1. Floyd

    Floyd Apprentice Gardener

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    I would love to hear your suggestions for planting in my borders. I have basically two types:

    1. borders (and a rockery) that get FULL SUN. Soil is extremely well drained and SANDY (this has caused me no end of troubles recently), with pebbles thrown in

    2. borders that are mostly in SHADE (soil conditions as above)

    I am looking for suggestions for:
    - low maintenance evergreens (shrubs etc)
    - perennial flowers.

    that will suit these two border scenarios. I appreciate that it may take some thought but I'm sure there are plenty of experienced gardeners who also know these conditions.

    Thanks in advance. Floyd
     
  2. PeterS

    PeterS Total Gardener

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    Hi Floyd.

    I am afraid that I garden on heavy clay - so really have no experience of your conditions.

    But full sun and very well drained sandy soil says 'Mediterranean plants' to me. So it might be worthwhile Googling those words. I had a quick Google and found this http://www.crocus.co.uk/plants/_/mediterranean-plants/plcid.719/

    The other key words would be 'drought tolerant' which is essentially another description of the same group.

    One plant I would try is Centranthus (Red Valerian), even though its a British native. It is very drought tolerant, I think it is lovely and it flowers for a very long period of time. When it has finished flowering you cut back by one third, and after about three weeks its back in flower again.
     
  3. Fidgetsmum

    Fidgetsmum Total Gardener

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    Hi Floyd. I too garden on a Kentish 'sandpit'. I suggest you google 'plants for sandy soil' and/or 'perennials for sandy soil' together with 'plants/perennials for alkaline soil' - just some of the results will include: agastache, artemisia, centaurea, dierama, echinacea, erigeron, galega, gypsophila, knautia, leucanthemum, linum, lychnis, nepeta, osteospermum, perovskia, potentilla, salvia mycrophylla, sedum, stachys, spiraea, verbascum, verbena.

    As for shrubs, euonymus fortunei and choisya would be a start - both could probably withstand a nuclear attack - they love the pseudo-desert which is my front garden and get a once (sometimes twice) a year trim which keeps my 25 year old plants at a respectable 12"-18".
     
  4. Floyd

    Floyd Apprentice Gardener

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    Thank you both for your references. Its a good start!
     
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