Planting for Year Round Interest
Although many plants, just like people, have their quirks and thrive in different conditions, there are some excellent all-rounders that will cope with a myriad of different situations.
However, for a garden to look good for most of the year, you need to consider form and structure: this is the back bone of your space. See my suggestions below that will give your garden the essential year-round framework it needs with plants that will put flesh on the bones and perform for you with little required in terms of maintenance.
Here are my favourite shrubs for adding structure to your garden:
Taxus Baccata is an superb evergreen which can grow big! But it is happy to be clipped into a manageable shape.
Lonicera Nitida is also evergreen and can be let to grow bushy and sprawling, otherwise trim to a shape of your choosing.
Buxus Sempervirens is the classic plant used for topiary. It prefers being trimmed in June and feed every few months to keep it looking tip top.
Hebe come in all different sizes and colours, be sure to read the label and choose one suitable to where you want to put it.
Phormium have a lovely fan shape and likes a fair bit of sun. They can eventually get big so place somewhere they can grow into!
Choisya has lovely glossy foliage and scented white flowers. It likes some sun but is otherwise unfussy!
FANTASTIC Flowering plants
Here are my must-have plants to add a splash of colour to your outdoor space:
Astrantia is a real favourite of mine! Make sure you remove any dead flower heads at the bottom of their stem as this will encourage lots more flowers!
Alchemilla Mollis is tough and will grow anywhere! It also likes to self-seed so remove the dead flower heads if you don’t want it to end up all over the garden.
Salvias like more sunshine than shade but dead head them as above and they will flower till the first frosts.
Bergenia is great for ground cover, has evergreen foliage and will tolerate semi-shade.
Hardy Geraniums are amazing plants for ground cover. There is a variety for any situation and if you cut them back as soon as they have finished flowering, they will regrow and give you another show of flowers that will last into the autumn.
Rudbekia Goldstum is so joyful when it flowers! Its sunshine-coloured daisies flower for weeks and they also have lovely seed heads. Plant in a sunny spot!
Here are my favourite spring flowering bulbs:
Alliums, with the purple pompoms, look wonderful planted amongst grasses!
Daffodils are a must in any garden, plant early-flowering varieties for cheer in early spring.
Tulips make a great addition, you can never have too many in my opinion! I like to plant them in pots of clashing colours, the riot of colour never fails to make me smile. Orange and purple being one of my favourite combos!