Ideologically sound for 2013

12 Jan

Outlaw Gardener was prompting readers to relay their plans for the year, so here goes. I have lots of concepts. Too many. Then what usually happens is that they get all obfuscated by random shopping at local garden centres. Not this year, no sir. So here we go.

Try to convince the neighbours that their apple tree, which is almost as high as the house, wants pruning. Severely. Also, maybe open up their eyes to replacing the privet (spit) with something more artsy. Podocarpus macrophyllus anyone?

Plant up the desert (small raised bed – now with added roof) with cold hardy cacti and succulents, following the advice of a book I received as a thoughtful Christmas present – Cacti and Succulents for Cold Climates, by Leo J. Chance. Try to keep to glaucous plants where possible.

Make the field (large raised bed, as christened by my eldest son) a strictly Green Avoidance area. I mean, avoid using green. Move arbutus unedo, agapanthus etc to the back border. Be ruthless. I can do this if I concentrate, but it’s going to be hard. I may need moral support here.

Backfill both raised beds with a deep gravel mulch of suitable colour. (What would be a suitable colour to show off glaucous plants to best advantage?)

Also, keep collecting the more spectacular hardy evergreens and broadleaf evergreens to gradually hide the neighbour’s brick wall at the back of the garden. Burncoose have nearly doubled the price of their Magnolia macrophylla, but I can live with that. Want.

Finally, keep planting the front garden with green foliage plants, some with white variegation and others with white flowers. Likewise, fill out the shade border with more green exuberance.

Oh and introduce more scent into the garden.

I’m pretty sure that covers everything.

With all that in mind, I have a longlist compiled which i will share with you. It has yet to go through the wringer of the above ideas. It is geek central (not to mention indigestibly long), but that’s just the way i’m made. I’ll probably be ordering from a couple of specialist cactus nurseries too but their web catalogues are shut for the time being. So, for an ideologically sound year of gardening, i’m thinking about spending on the following nurseries and plants –

Beeches, Essex

Hedychium coronarium
Helianthus salicifolius
Impatiens tinctoria
Kniphofia northiae
Lilium superbum
Cyrtomium fortunei
Beschorneria septentrionalis
Agave neomexicana
Aralia cordata
Aruncus dioicus
Cardiocrinum giganteum
Euphorbia myrsinites
Fascicularia bicolor caniliculata
Verbascum olympicum
Eryngium pandanifolium

Hart Canna, somewhere down South

Canna ‘Stuttgart’

Burncoose, Cornwall

Euphorbia myrsinites
Magnolia macrophylla
Sciadopitys verticillata
Eucalyptus nicholii
Podocarpus macrophyllus ‘aureus’

Hardy Exotics, Cornwall

Podocarpus macrophyllus
Eriobotrya japonica
Acacia pravissima
Cardiocrinum giganteum
Asphodeline lutea
Clematis armandii
Eryngium pandanifolium
Fatshedera lizei
Impatiens omeiana

Cross common, Cornwall

Agave colorata
Beschorneria yuccoides ‘quick silver’
Brahea armata
Cestrum nocturnum
Cyrtomium fortunei

Special Plants, somewhere down South

Asphodelus albus
Cynara cardunculus
Cobaea scandens ‘alba’
Datisca cannabina
Erythrina crista-galli
Eucalyptus nicholii
Ipomaea quamoclit
Solanum atropurpureum

Chiltern seeds, Oxfordshire

Ricinus communis ‘New Zealand Purple’
Papaver somniferum ‘Black Peony’
Solanum pyracanthum
Asphodelus albus
Cynara cardunculus
Cobaea scandens ‘Alba’
Datisca cannabina
Bromelia pinguin
Bromeliad ‘unknown species III’
Leucadendron argenteum


7 Responses to “Ideologically sound for 2013”

  1. Becca January 14, 2013 at 3:22 am #

    You need more ‘sit in the garden sipping chardonnay…’ 🙂 But as far as glaucous, I like that with raspberry and black. Black mulch, black plants, it doesn’t matter. My favorite plant for raspberry is gomphrena ‘fireworks.’

    • thechthonianlife January 14, 2013 at 12:30 pm #

      Oh, to be in California!

      Black and glaucous is good. I’ll be working that again this coming year, definitely.

      I never saw that plant before. I like its open, airy shape.

  2. Loree / Danger garden January 14, 2013 at 5:59 am #

    Wow, you’re not fooling around! What an ambitious list, makes me feel like a slacker. I recognize most of the plants on your list…now I’m going to go look up the ones that I don’t. Fun!

    • thechthonianlife January 14, 2013 at 12:37 pm #

      I’m fine with not getting it all done – believe me, it won’t all be done – but I don’t want to end up spending time and money on stuff i’ll regret just because it’s easier in the short term.

  3. Peter January 15, 2013 at 3:50 am #

    I’m tired just thinking about your list of projects! The only things missing from your list were: Bring about world peace, Stop climate change, and Solve current economic issues. In all seriousness, though, I admire the fact that you have a vision for your garden. I usually head outside, grab whatever tool is nearest, and begin whatever task can be completed with the implement at hand.

    • thechthonianlife January 16, 2013 at 6:54 am #

      I have an overly active imagination, that’s for sure. I think I might have got carried away with myself . . . again


  1. The Green Carnation « The Chthonian Life - January 22, 2013

    […] it fits in with the programme on two scores: glaucous foliage and good […]

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