May 28th 2016 My thoughts on the slope planting

I see the slope every time I come home; it forms the right side of the drive with the olive trees to the left.

I’ve written a lot in the past about how the slope was planted with plants that were already growing well in other parts of the garden and especially with plants that were happy enough to be self seeding.  Looking at the planting now I find it very interesting how the different plants form colonies and drifts with little interference from me.

This, of course, is one of the currant trends in garden and landscape design; I’m pleased that I came to my decision without consciously following this trend but as the solution to a problem.

The slope is quite steep and so difficult to maintain, my aim is that eventually it will be mostly covered with shrubs that form ground cover and I won’t have to intervene  at all, for now weeds do grow in the spaces and some of the herbaceous plants need cutting back when they’ve finished for the year.

In the evening light the scarlet flowers of Salvia  really pop!

In the evening light the scarlet flowers of Salvia really pop!

I think I should grow more Salvias, they are sometimes slow to establish but once they have pushed their roots down into the tuffo, they will grow very large.

Just look at how many plants mingle together to create a tapestry of colour

Just look at how many plants mingle together to create a tapestry of colour

The poppies are closed in the evening light but during the day the slope positively glows with their bright orange and red.

Phlomis are from seedlings found under the plant in the large island

Phlomis are from seedlings found under the plant in the large island

I have just added some Sisyrinchium striatum from the woodland walk; it thrives here almost to the point of being invasive but I like the contrast their sword-like leaves add.

All the Cistus have been grown from cuttings although I would like more I find them quite difficult to strike

All the Cistus have been grown from cuttings although I would like more I find them quite difficult to strike

Stipa tenuissima places itself differently and beautifully each year.

Stipa tenuissima places itself differently and beautifully each year.

A Madonna Lily in the foreground and white double Philadelphus at the top of the slope

A Madonna Lily in the foreground and white double Philadelphus at the top of the slope

Salvia turkestanica appears in different spots each year as does Verbascum.

Fennel plants are becoming slightly invasive and I'll have to try to cut them down before they set seed this year but I do love the bright green froth they add

Fennel plants are becoming slightly invasive and I’ll have to try to cut them down before they set seed this year but I do love the bright green froth they add

This area could have become a problem area if I’d tried to plant it in the same way as the rest of the garden but by allowing plants to mingle and form colonies it has become an ever changing source of great pleasure.

Do you have n area of your garden that was a problem area that you have managed to transform into an asset?

Advertisements

23 thoughts on “May 28th 2016 My thoughts on the slope planting

  1. I love the steely blues next to the bright oranges and how satisfying to have made most of it by lifting and re-planting from other parts of the garden. Tapestry is the right word for that gorgeous planting..

  2. Your slope is a wonderful tapestry of colours shapes and textures Christina, definitely an asset to your garden! I was amused when I read that your grow your Sisyrinchium in your woodland walk, whereas I grow mine in the couple of borders that get sunshine here!
    My problem area was where I now have the bog garden (post coming soon), everything the previous people had planted was dying, once I found that there was an underground stream, a bog was the obvious answer. Most people told me to drain it, but I’m glad I didn’t!

  3. I love your slope at this time of the year with the grasses and poppies. I would love to see it for real. I am still working on my problem areas: under the beech tree is becoming a stumpery with ferns, on the dry raised bed I have planted grasses and hope to get some orange poppy seeds this year (my wild poppies are yellow). I tried some white lychnis seeds but only one has come through so far and that has been devoured by snalis!!! I am also trying to get dry shade loving plants established at the top of my garden under the big deciduous trees. Maybe in a few years I will have some areas I would consider an asset……

  4. I can’t say I’ve successfully transformed and problem areas yet, but they are slowly becoming more interesting and I hope someday to have my own tapestry!
    I do find though that the amount of work involved is beginning to guide many of my decisions. Problem areas are more likely to be high maintenance areas and I’m looking for my own set of shrubs and ground covers which hold my interest yet don’t need constant fussing.

  5. It certainly doesn’t look like a problem area. The effect is absolutely beautiful. As Pauline says: ‘ a wonderful tapestry of colours, shapes and textures.’ Well done! A work of art.

  6. Christina its slope is a wonderful tapestry created by different plants and some with removing the monotony forms the whole. Has very different colors and textures which is very nice, besides having flowers as poppies, red flowers Salvia and Madonna lily crown with its pure white color the top of the slope. Its slope was a magnificent creation that is already mature and understand my inexperienced beautiful. Greetings from Margarita.

  7. You’ve achieve a stunning array of color and texture–not easy to do as well as you have–on this slope. I like the different paths and I’m sure each season brings different delights. Nicely done, Christina.

  8. You’ve managed your slope beautifully, Christina. I’m not there yet with mine, although I’ve gotten as far as clearing the area of weeds and establishing a few vigorous plants (Centranthus, Euphorbia, Ribes and a few succulents). I’ve been tempted to add Stipa tenuissima to the mix but it has a reputation of being invasive here and, with no solid boundary between our property and that of our neighbor, I’d feel guilty about allowing it to spread indiscriminately across the boundary line so I’ve been experimenting with Seslaria instead.

  9. Stunning as always. To my mind it is the grasses (especially Stipa), the greys and your glorious poppies that hold it together. A little jewel, Christina. My problem area – funnily enough I’m calling it the slope (but I doubt it will ever be as beautiful as yours!) It’s a steep area (there are two actually, either side of steps) that was impossible to maintain. I’ve decided to shove every known shrub and leftover in there just to cover the ground so that I don’t have to fuss about it any more. However there will never be your glorious poppies or much grey, since they really don’t like my soil. Thanks for giving us an insight into how your planting evolved on your Slope!

  10. The plants look beautiful 🙂 Your practice and talent are letting you change even challenges into successes.

    • Jessica, I’m sure with a little time your slope will be a joy to you. My only advice is to just go with plants that you know are happy there, even allow a few weeds if there aren’t too invasive if they hold the soil or have flowers for a short while. It does take time to find an equilibrium but worth the wait.

Leave a Reply

Please log in using one of these methods to post your comment:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s