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By Lesleyk

Tyne And Wear, United Kingdom Gb

I am very new to gardening and wondered if anyone has any suggestions as to what to plant to get flowers this summer, that will hopefully grow year after year - to get me started



Hi Lesley and welcome to GoY, scroll down to the bottom of the page to Goypaedia and click on 'P' and then 'perennial plants' you will get lots and lots of ideas.

21 Jan, 2013


First hello and welcome to Goy Lesley.

Rudbeckias are so beautiful.

Clematis, Spring bulbs , you buy pots of flowering bulbs from the garden centre and then pot into garden after bloom and they will come up every year.

Sunflowers, Gladioli .

Have a look at this blog.

21 Jan, 2013


Hi Lesley and welcome from me too. Kat, Lesley is in Tyne and Wear which is marginally cooler than us (but not as cool as where you are). I grow rudbeckias, I agree they are beautiful, but I have to grow them as an annual nowadays (they used to come back but with climate change, alas, now rarely). Clematis is also great, I think I have about 12 now, but if planted in spring, they will no way flower this coming summer. I think Lesley has yet to learn that, to get a beautiful garden, you have to plant some temporary plants for now but plant perennials with a view to the future.

I know that when I started I wanted an instant garden. Years later I am still working on it. Look to growing some annuals for flowers for next year but do plant some perennials (see Moon grower's advice) to develop over the years ahead. If a perennial flowers next year then great, but annuals are a great stand by when you are starting. Self seeders like poppies are a great stand by as well. They only grow for a year but leave their babies for future years.

21 Jan, 2013


@Sarraceniac "Lesley is in Tyne and Wear which is marginally cooler than us (but not as cool as where you are)".

Tyne and Wear will have the same plant hardiness and temperatures, it is about 100 miles (about 69 from me) away, if anything they get more snow and frost down in T&W. N. Yorkshire is probably wetter and colder than me (caostal Fife) and Kat (Angus). Eastern Scotland south of Aberdeen is mild and quite dry.

21 Jan, 2013


And starting a new garden is expensive.

Friends will be delighted pass when the split their plants.

Some you will like some not but to start with its great adn cheaperloom.

.KM certainly not mild with us it icyy cold and snowing so heavy and blizzards.

Lesley its nice to go to garden centres at different seasons to see what is .

Rhodendrums is another passion of mine as are camelias.

Think I may have 13 clemmatis.

Good luck.

21 Jan, 2013


Yes agree, perrenials are a must, but you have to be patient as they grow, once clumps are formed they will look fantastic and give you many years of enjoyment, if your creating a small/large border then you could go with the cottage garden theme, plant it out so you have flowers/ interest right through the year and into the depths of winter, but initially you can incorporate some annuals that you can mix in to give you an explosion of colour, remember with the perrenials to plant the taller ones to the back of the border and the lower ones to the front. i have some huge clumps of rudbeckias amongst other perrenials which i will need to divide soon, if your down this way then you can have some.

21 Jan, 2013


If you want to fill some space for this year with something cheap and cheerful while you collect your perennials, try calendulas. You can sow them where you want them to flower. They have big orange flowers all summer and autumn and produce seed you can save for next year. In milder climates like our garden they also self seed.

Lilies will flower the year you plant the bulbs. There are many different heights and colours to choose from.

Astilbes should flower first season and the size of the clump increases quite quickly - colours range from white through pink to deep red. They prefer dampish soil but are tolerant of others.

There are many perennial geraniums with blue, pink or white flowers. (Not the red and pink ones we often see in bedding schemes and pots, which are actually pelargoniums) ) Some prefer sun and some shade and heights very, as do flowering times, so check before choosing. Many are quite vigorous and reliable and all should have some flowers at least in the first season.

21 Jan, 2013


Thanks to all of you for the advice - I think I have a lot to learn - but at least now I have a starting point.

21 Jan, 2013


Lesleyk take a blank canvas before and after photo .

21 Jan, 2013


Scotkat -

Good idea - I will do that - I looked at the blog you suggested earlier thank you - I can only dream.

21 Jan, 2013


Its nice to dream and we will all try to help you .

21 Jan, 2013


My advice is to avoid Poppies. Butterflies will not come into a garden where they are growing. Very intelligent creatures, Butterflies.

22 Jan, 2013


@Kildermorie. Please note that right on the Yorkshire coast is not as cold or as wet as the inland areas of North Yorkshire or even the midlands of England, as far south as Oxford even. In fact our winters tend to be very mild, it is just that the sea, which keeps us warmer in winter, keeps us cooler in summer. Thus most of Yorkshire is in USDA zone 7 starting just about 12 miles inland from or even north of us but we are zone 8.

22 Jan, 2013


Depends which poppy you mean Diane the Himalayan poppies don't bother the butterflies.

22 Jan, 2013


Ouch Diane I grow both Asiatic poppies, the ones with 6" red, white and pink six inch heads and also Welsh poppies which have yellow or orange heads. I also have meconopsis which are only in their second year so have not flowered yet. We do get lots of butterflies because I also grow Buddleia shrubs.
Welcome to Goy Lesley. As you are starting from scratch you need to think of the time you will have available to look after plants. When I was in my early thirties and working I chose to plant lots of flowering shrubs. There are deciduous or evergreen ones which stay green all year. You can have variegated foliage or coloured foliage as well as green. Stems can give a lot of interest You can choose to have plants in flower in every season and interest in the garden all year round. I had a lot of planting to do and was advised to plant smaller plants which should establish more easily than older and bigger specimens. I interplanted with annuals the first year from seed and added HP (herbaceous perennials) from supermarkets. The likes of Morrisons do good quality plants at very reasonable prices. As you start populating your garden and gain experience you will learn what you like and what works for you. A word of warning, I was enthusiastic about using membrane on top of the soil and planting in holes in the mistaken belief that I would keep the weeds away. It works only if you have no weeds or weed seeds to worry about. Nowadays i use a double sheet of newspaper with soil on top. I plant first and the lay the paper on top and cover with soil. Weeds and bulbs will both poke through the newspaper and can be easily dealt with. I recommend the Dr Hessayon series of books to newbies. I often see as new versions in charity shops and while they may not contain the latest fashions plant wise they do give good basic information on choosing and planting. Good luck and we will look forward to seeing your garden as it develops.

22 Jan, 2013


Plenty of good advice here - I'll add something short and simple, which is actually something Scotsgran has touched on.
If you want your garden to look interesting during winter, and you want low maintenance, choose a mix of shrubs, a few perennials, bulbs and ground cover plants appropriate to the size and aspect of your garden. The shrubs are important to provide interest in winter, particularly evergreen shrubs, although even deciduous ones can have an interesting appearance in winter - those with coloured stems such as Cornus varieties, for instance.

22 Jan, 2013


Taking up Bamboo's Cornus suggestion, I have a huge red barked dogwood (never did any good with the yellow one - any suggestions?). Although the variegated leaves are nice, and as Bamboo says, the red stems are gorgeous in the bare garden in winter, the flowers are 'pooey' (not a word but you know what I mean. If anybody wants a root just PM me whilst it is dormant. If you are prepared to wait for a year or two while it spreads then well worth it just for the winter interest.

22 Jan, 2013


Yea, you wouldn't grow it for its flowers, but you would for other reasons...

22 Jan, 2013


Another thought - are you dealing with a brand new garden or one that you've just taken over? If the latter its usually a good idea to wait a season before doing any serious digging and replanting because there may be lots of treasures in there already waiting to appear later in the year. You can then fill up any spaces with annuals, bought plants if necessary.

22 Jan, 2013

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