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Plants in the Garden: Fun with a Sand Bed!

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Started by: Tim Ingram

Go to latest contribution by Tim Ingram, 11 June 2013, 08:51. Go to bottom of this page.

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Contribution from Tim Ingram 11 June 2013, 08:58top / bottom of page

A slightly fortuitous combination of Veronica thymoides and Helianthemum canum; the exquisite American Eriogonum ovalifolium (I am certainly going to try more and more of these on the bed, though like a number of plants I show they really need winter protection); and the first of a number of Androsaces - this is studiosorum 'Salmon's Variety' growing with self-seeding Polygala calcarea.

Several other Androsaces have made nice plants, though growing more slowly: A. studiosorum 'Doksa' (a very lovely white form); A. sarmentosa (Namche form); and very distinct, A. elatior. This tempts me to try more of this beautiful genus, and to learn more from the Androsace Group and from Jozef Lemmon's superb website: www.androsaceworld.com (many of the smaller more choice species I am sure would be better grown in troughs between crevices).

The sand bed sits as part of our front garden and the gravelled area in the foreground is made just over the normal garden soil, mainly for stronger growing pinks and silver foliage plants. In a way this confirms the effectiveness of growing alpines in this way because much more time has to be devoted to other parts of the garden and the alpines prosper with little care. There are plants as attractive as the choicest display plant in their moment - for example Achillea ageratifolia and a dwarf form of Dianthus gratianopolitanus (the Cheddar Pink), growing with a self-sown viola. It is hard to see why more gardeners do not use these plants in the garden, and I can only think that most remain 'uneducated' in the fairest possible sense.


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