Wrong plants entirely!

 Small Garden Design: Have a bit of a plan!


badly planted front

‘Naff’  is the best way to describe this – and because it was done by a house building firm, I am not insulting any homeowners by saying so! 

So what’s wrong with this.  The main problem is the vinca (the green plants in the centre) these are tough grow anywhere ground cover plants – so in this lovely rich sunny new bed – the vinca will quickly overwhelm everything. In addition, it’s quite an untidy plant (long tendrils emerge which re-root wherever they touch), not the thing for the front door! 

There are daffodils, primroses and pansies in flower, blue and yellow nice, blue and pink nice, yellow and pink… um not nice! 

In the back of the plot are some attempts at a shrub, which could be a choiysia, it is hard to tell, but do they really think they are well grown specimens?  Two branches and a few leaves on top – and you are paying for this? It looks like there are 7 in the picture, far too many in that small area.

A vinca turning into a triffid


In 18 months, you will have no pansies or primroses left on show, the vinca will have covered all of them, it may have killed off most of the ‘shrubs’ before then as well.

You may get the daffodils in the spring, but as the bulbs are clearly visible, (they need to be about 10cm deep at least), I doubt these will survive either. So a plot of wild shaggy untidy vinca with a pale blue flower for a few weeks each year but you need to trim it probably every few weeks so as you don’t trip up on the tendrils – great eh? 

OK, rant over, what to do:

1 good focal point plant – that gets to no more than 1m high and 1m round (for example, daphne, euphorbia, hebe, lavender, pittosporum or sarcococca).

Dapne odorata


Euphorbia Griffithii Fireglow


Hebe Pewter Dome poss


Pittosporum argyrophyllum








3-6 lower infill plants (depending on overall size) so geraniums, geums, gypsophilia, hostas, nepeta, grasses,

tulip ballerina 2


Geranium phaem album flower


geum mrs bradshaw


Gypsophilia Bristol Fairy (2)







9-12 bulbs depending on planting time, but these could be tulips,

It may take a little longer to look it’s best, but it will stay looking it’s best for longer!

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