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By Taurman

Cork, Ireland Ie

Folks, would appreciate a little advice and your thoughts. I'm planning this raised active working flower bed as have other beds that are membraned/gravelled over. It's west facing against the north/south embankment. Plan to put a collection of permanent flowers like astibes, lupins, salvias and things for general summer colour as this runs parallel to the drive and is visible form the public areas of garden and road. Soil is notoriously heavy and climate very wet and the altitude is 300 meters so will catch lots westerly winds to which it is fairly open. I intend to put in some bought stones and gravel at base for drainage to a few inches and the soil mix will be 1/3 quality top soil 1/3 grit and 1/3 bought quality compost. Each sleeper is 10 inches high so have 20 ins to play with. I will need to lay membrane on bank to quell the worst of the invading weeds and grass. That is the master plan, how does it sound? Many thanks for your time.

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My concern would be with the grass and weeds. Even with a membrane they will be through in three or four years, if your lucky.

6 Aug, 2016


I agree - didn't have the heart to say so if I was going to be the only one. Membrane is very popular but it isn't always the best solution. What were you thinking would hide the membrane? . Is there a field on the other side of the hedge? If so grass and other things will always come through whatever you do. You will be making a rod for your own back

A flower border there would be lovely - but why not move it away from the bank to leave room for you to get in and strim it when necessary. Perhaps you might use the present length of boarding as the back of your bed and put in another length for the front? Apart from anything else you'd then be able to dig it properly and get some depth of cultivated soil - you could forget about membrane then, which would only be a nuisance in later years.

6 Aug, 2016


Oh hell, sounds a bit like " trouble ahead", it's a meadow outside of the fence but wherever onebisbin the country, you tend to get seeds etc blown in. Thank you both for your responses.

6 Aug, 2016


I think Stera's idea is very good. The bank would give shelter to your plants & the front of the bed needn't necessarily be straight, it could have curves. Do share with us how it develops. We will be interested to see.

7 Aug, 2016


Well folks have had my gardening friend affectionately know here as "the wonder in wellies" up for a chat about my dilemma. He has suggested that the invading greenery is apossible issue but I could probably go ahead with my plan but landscape and cover the upper reaches of the bank in groundcover plants which will smother out the invading greenery. He has extensive garden nursery experience and is going to identify suitable plants for me which I think is the solution I shall go with. I'll get back to you in a few years with a photograph of how it fares. Happy gardening.

10 Aug, 2016


"Will smother out invading greenery" sounds a bit optimistic to me. Willowherb and nettles for example are very good at coming up in the middle of other stuff.
If you go ahead with the idea please do keep us posted with some progress reports.Its a grand site for a flower border.

11 Aug, 2016

How do I say thanks?

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