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What to grow on extreme sandy soil?

Discussion in 'General Gardening Discussion' started by Sian in Belgium, Aug 6, 2019.

  1. Sian in Belgium

    Sian in Belgium Total Gardener

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    That would be fantastic @ARMANDII ! I will be over in the UK doing one of my regular visits to Mum later this month.... and then back again in October...
     
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    • ARMANDII

      ARMANDII Low Flying Administrator Staff Member

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      It's not a problem:dunno:. I'll probably start splitting the Iris in late September and then courier them to you, Sian.:):coffee:
       
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      • Sian in Belgium

        Sian in Belgium Total Gardener

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        As i was driving past a building site the other day, I was struck with the sight of a wall of sand, where they had cut into the slope.....

        This is what I mean by our sand/soil!
        IMG_20190910_181804.jpg
        that's about 3 - 4 metres high, pure sand, with variations in the colour.
         
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          Last edited: Sep 11, 2019
        • ARMANDII

          ARMANDII Low Flying Administrator Staff Member

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          That's probably the tip of the Iceberg, Sian:hate-shocked::heehee: I'm in exactly the same position with a old Roman, disused, Sand Quarry about 30'-40' from my front door and about 350' to 450' of pure sand under the House. The difference is, I guess, our weather being much wetter and mostly cooler, the addition of tons of Stable, Farm manure, and used commericial compost over the decadesw, while also not being in an exposed windy position as, I think, you are. It hasn't stopped you enjoying gardening though has it!!:love30::heehee::cat-kittyandsmiley::coffee:
           
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          • Sian in Belgium

            Sian in Belgium Total Gardener

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            I don’t want to be seen as labouring the point, but unless you have experienced this “growing medium” as you have, @ARMANDII , it is hard to comprehend, I think. Even the Dutch-based workmen digging up our street to lay sewage pipes were shocked and surprised. They had thought they needed to use shuttering to hold up the walls of the trenches....

            No, I love it!
            But watching established trees die, after another long dry summer, is heartbreaking.
            We have decided no more fruit trees, and no more big shrubs. Just loads of tlc, manure and compost, along with our precious water, for the existing plants.

            A silly aside, but for those who are on metered water, how much does it cost per litre? Or cubic metre, if that’s easier? A friend in a leased apartment asked us, so we worked it out, separate from the various standing charges to the local council, the province, and the water company, and we were shocked!:hate-shocked:
             
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            • ARMANDII

              ARMANDII Low Flying Administrator Staff Member

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              I totallly agree, Sian.
              I think all the rest of the GC Gang know that, just by the way you write about gardening and how you combat the problems of your garden.:love30:

              I can't help you with the cost of metered water as I don't have that system and will put it off for as long as possible. Some say they find it more expensive and some say the opposite, but maybe the way they charge for water is different where you are than in the UK, as Water Company charges are completely separate from Council.
               
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              • Clare G

                Clare G Super Gardener

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                In the UK metered water charges vary according to region, and at the moment you are tied in to one local monopoly supplier though I believe there are plans to change that in the future: Price of water - how UK water rates are calculated

                Thus in London I am with Thames Water, who are not unreasonable, and it saves me money to have a meter - the usual calculation is that should you have more residents than bedrooms, it will be cheaper to stick with the estimated charge as my neighbours do. Though even they had to have a meter installed, and if/ when they move the new residents will have no choice but to use it.

                I know friends down in Devon and Cornwall have to pay much higher charges....
                 
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                • Sian in Belgium

                  Sian in Belgium Total Gardener

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                  Thanks for the info, @Clare G .

                  It doesn’t say how much per litre you are charged, even a ball-park figure....
                   
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                  • Clare G

                    Clare G Super Gardener

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                    That's too complicated for me to work out! There is a standing charge as well as the price per litre, which again varies even within the Thames Water area. You also pay by volume both for water coming in, and going out - i.e. sewerage. Full details here if you want to wade through them: Metered charges | Our charges | Thames Water

                    Or I can tell you that Ken and I currently pay £17.00 a month to Thames Water!
                     
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                    • Sian in Belgium

                      Sian in Belgium Total Gardener

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                      Ah-ha, so it’s £1.40 per cubic metre... that’s a lot cheaper than for us! No wonder people use lawn sprinklers in the UK!!
                       
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                      • Nikolaos

                        Nikolaos Gardener

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                        Have a look through this list if you haven't already, @Sian in Belgium. Includes quite a few of the plants suggested in this thread. They're what Beth Chatto used in her gravel garden. :) Seems that double-digging and lots of spent mushroom compost did the trick there! They also stock a few of them in their nursery, so perhaps you could order them there and collect when visiting here. :smile: The three plants I've recently purchased from them certainly seem very healthy!

                        Drought Loving Plants - The Beth Chatto Gardens

                        Expert Advice: 11 Tips for Gravel Garden Design - Gardenista

                        Nick
                         
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                        • longk

                          longk Total Gardener

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                          What are your winter lows?
                          Along with Agapanthus I would add Alstoemeria. Also Eremurus...........
                          [​IMG]Eremurus by longk48, on Flickr

                          [​IMG]Eremurus? by longk48, on Flickr

                          Aloe striatula.............
                          [​IMG]Aloe striatula by longk48, on Flickr

                          [​IMG]Aloe striatula by longk48, on Flickr

                          I would also give Morina longifolia a go - easy from seed.

                          What about Eucomis, and also Galtonia...............
                          [​IMG]Galtonia candicans by longk48, on Flickr

                          Fritillaria imperialis............
                          [​IMG]Fritillaria imperialis by longk48, on Flickr

                          Fritillaria persica.............
                          [​IMG]Fritillaria persica by longk48, on Flickr
                           
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                          • Sian in Belgium

                            Sian in Belgium Total Gardener

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                            Our winters tend to be colder, and drier, than the UK, so we often see a winter low of -10c, and I have known a week when we had a daily high of -5c. That being said, the last few years have not been that cold, with just an occasional -10c.

                            I have worn out a snow-shovel in just 6 years, though!!
                             
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