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Succession planting in mixed borders

This was a long term project to introduce unusual high performance shrubs and trees to existing mixed borders, and add new perennial plantings and bulbs to give an extended season of interest.

The borders are planted to give different colour harmonies along their length, with vibrant areas contrasting with quieter passages in shadier areas.

The season begins with snowdrops and aconites in February, and continues with dahlias and half hardy plants flowering into November.

Whilst regular maintenance is required through the season, the shrub cover reduces the amount of ground to be cultivated, and only a small proportion of the perennials need lifting and dividing in any one season.

 

Snowdrops

The season gets underway in February with snowdrops.

Alliums

Alliums and aquilegia complement lush foliage in May.

Aralia elata aureovariegata

Cardoon, aralia and nectaroscordum make a bold display.

Wider view

Strong foliage holds the composition together.

Clematis macropetala

Clematis macropetala scrambles through a crab apple.

The June border

In June the bulbs are over, perennials are poised to flower.

North border

A shady north border need not be boring.

Kniphofia Wrexham Buttercup

Bold colours at this end blend into blues and purples further up.

Colour harmony

Plants chosen to harmonise with Cercis canadensis 'Forest Pansy'

Red dahlias

Late summer, and dahlias carry the season on.

Purple flowers

Astrantia and lavender in a purple border

Late October

The season continues to the end of October with half hardy plants.

The season gets underway in February with snowdrops.Alliums and aquilegia complement lush foliage in May.Cardoon, aralia and nectaroscordum make a bold display.Strong foliage holds the composition together.Clematis macropetala scrambles through a crab apple.In June the bulbs are over, perennials are poised to flower.A shady north border need not be boring.Bold colours at this end blend into blues and purples further up.Plants chosen to harmonise with Cercis canadensis 'Forest Pansy'Late summer, and dahlias carry the season on.Astrantia and lavender in a purple borderThe season continues to the end of October with half hardy plants.