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Old 19.05.2016, 11:30
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Re: How about a gardening thread?

My first post in the gardening thread, usually I hang around pet corner so hello everyone! We have recently moved into a mountain farm at 800m. Previous owners had far greener fingers that us so I am desperately trying not to kill plants and shrubs.... We cleared a south facing slope (picture attached) last week and are wondering what to plant that will a) look nice, b) be really low maintenance and c) be bullet proof as we look after dogs. We are thinking of alpine heather? We would welcome any suggestions thanks!
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  #1142  
Old 19.05.2016, 11:32
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Re: How about a gardening thread?

North, South, East, West-facing?
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  #1143  
Old 19.05.2016, 12:00
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Re: How about a gardening thread?

Sorry, it's south facing
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  #1144  
Old 19.05.2016, 13:43
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Re: How about a gardening thread?

We are at ca 750-800m ( I can never remember...) but sort of protected by the Rossberg. That means we get less sun, but are not as exposed as real mountain areas. We are always searching for 'dog friendly' ideas, as the mutts have re-landscaped pretty much all my earlier efforts. So for what it's worth...

Since I have such a small garden, I try to plant 'double duty' plants - things that are useful, like fruit, as well as decorative.

Wild strawberries/Waldbeeren make a great natural ground cover, particularly good on a slope - they spread very quickly. Slugs might be an issue, though.

(Don't plan on eating the fruit if the dogs piddle in the area. )

Vinca is another hardy slope groundcover, fairly resistent to puppy paws. White, light blue or darker blue flowers in the spring, Vinca stays green all year round.

What is your soil? If acidic, my new favorite slope shrub is compact blueberries. The plants grow to ca. 60-80cm, white flowers in the spring, fruit in the summer, the leaves turn red in the autumn. They are deciduous, so will be bare in winter.

If the soil is not acidic, there are two blueberry varieties that tolerate normal soil - Reka and Elizabeth. These will grow taller, however. Ca 150cm, IIRC.

Some blueberries take sun, some part sun/part shade.

Jury is still out on my Johannesbeeren; I've had Blattausfallkrankheit two years running, perhaps we have too much rain and cold for them.

Another easy care shrub is potentilla - small white, pink, red, or yellow flowers mid summer on. These do need some pruning to keep neat, but other than that can pretty much be neglected. Again, deciduous.

If you want year round green, a variety of compact evergreens might be nice. The dogs run through the evergreens, and they do not seem to be any worse for the wear. (Pretty prickly on puppy paws, though.)

You could do a foundation of evergreens with a few other interesting ground covers to hold the soil in - and plant bulbs for spring color. That would be very easy care.

Some of the lower-growing cranesbills make for very easy care summer color.... but be careful, because some varieties cannot tolerat full hot sun.

I've had good luck with Barlauch; a nicely formed plant, white flowers in the spring. And useful. The dogs do not piddle anywhere near the Barlauch; perhaps it's the garlicky smell.

You could even do hardy herbs liked creeping thyme.

If you have strong sun, day lilies are super easy care. Very hardy... but if the dogs run through the area they might sucumb . (The Belltie sleeps in my day lilies. They put up with him, but only just. And he's fairly little - Heffalump would do them in.)

The previous owner planted ferns in our granite wall - another easy slope option. They stand up to dogs, you can absolutely neglect them... until winter. They do not fully die back given our climate, so the ugly brown dead fronds need cutting back. But they can be whacked off with a hedge trimmer if needed. I like the small ferns, but am not so fond of the giant ones - and these have proved almost impossible to get rid of. You'd need something to mix with the ferns, though, as they do not provide any fall/winter interest.

Whatever you choose, look for Hohenlage (no idea what the French is), plants suitable for high altitude. Most of my mistakes come from planting things that cannot take the altitude - even though 800m isn't really high altitude.

Just a few ideas, based on what is in the 'dog' portion of my garden.

Looks like you have lots of fun ahead - good luck!
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  #1145  
Old 19.05.2016, 13:58
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Re: How about a gardening thread?

I neglected to read the dog thing when replying and have no idea what dogs can do but I would have thought ferns wouldn't do so well in full sun.

You ought to get the PH of your soil tested, or at least look at what neighbours in the same area are growing to see if any plants you choose are suitable.

Alpine heathers etc really need acidic soil.
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  #1146  
Old 19.05.2016, 17:58
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Re: How about a gardening thread?

Thanks so much for the advice. This pic might give a sense of how bullet proof plants need to be in our place! I'll do my homework and keep you posted thanks again!
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  #1147  
Old 19.05.2016, 18:00
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Re: How about a gardening thread?

Another example....
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  #1148  
Old 19.05.2016, 19:51
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Re: How about a gardening thread?

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  #1149  
Old 19.05.2016, 23:15
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Re: How about a gardening thread?

Another thing to think about is toxicity for dogs. From Vetpharm/Clinitox, you can read up on whether the plants you are considering might be toxic to dogs, or not:

http://www.vetpharm.uzh.ch/perldocs/index_x.htm

You'll notice that I have day lilies - which can be toxic. But none of mine are plant eaters, so I don't worry. (The Belltie eats grass, but nothing else.) However, if I had a puppy, or a dog I don't know staying here, I would have to take out the day lilies.

When a newbie joins the family, plants that could be toxic are fenced off until I know whether he is at risk or not.

If you have guest dogs, to be safe stay away from anything that could be even mildly toxic.

You should also consider slug control. My solution is to plant anything that needs slug control in the front garden, where the dogs cannot go, and even then to use only the supposedly non-toxic kind. When using any pesticide, fertilizer, mulch, etc. safety around dogs should be considered.

Last edited by meloncollie; 19.05.2016 at 23:53.
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Old 20.05.2016, 13:01
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Re: How about a gardening thread?

Just moved here and would like to start some terrace planters. I had soil delivered from Migros but can't seem to find a place that sells stones/rocks for drainage. I 'd like to put them at the bottom of the planter pots.

Help!
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  #1151  
Old 24.05.2016, 13:06
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Re: How about a gardening thread?

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I would have thought ferns wouldn't do so well in full sun.
As would I.

And yet mine thrive in full sun, full shade and anything in-between.

Unfortunately.

I've been chiselling out corms for years now, but hard as I try I can't seem to get rid of the giant ferns. They seem to take all the abuse I can dish out and come back for more.

Unfortunately.
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  #1152  
Old 24.05.2016, 13:08
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Re: How about a gardening thread?

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As would I.

And yet mine thrive in full sun, full shade and anything in-between.
Perhaps they like the cool temperatures at the altitude where you live?
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  #1153  
Old 24.05.2016, 13:09
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Re: How about a gardening thread?

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Just moved here and would like to start some terrace planters. I had soil delivered from Migros but can't seem to find a place that sells stones/rocks for drainage. I 'd like to put them at the bottom of the planter pots.

Help!
You don't need them - it's a myth.

They can actually cause more problems as the roots grow around the stones and are not protected in the earth from harsh frosts.

If you still want them then Hornbach or any of the DIY places with a garden centre attached sell stones.
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Old 24.05.2016, 13:50
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Re: How about a gardening thread?

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Perhaps they like the cool temperatures at the altitude where you live?
True, dat.

'Full sun' round these parts means would probably be better translated as 'a 10 minute break between rain storms'.

(Totters out to rescue the drowning zucchini...)
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Old 25.05.2016, 12:22
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Re: How about a gardening thread?

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Just moved here and would like to start some terrace planters. I had soil delivered from Migros but can't seem to find a place that sells stones/rocks for drainage. I 'd like to put them at the bottom of the planter pots.

Help!

For this purpose I use Blähton (expanded clay), you can get it in every garden/DIY center, even smaller sized ones stock it.

for many years now, I grow a lot of veges, herbs and berries on my balcony in pots and so far quite successful with this.
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Old 25.05.2016, 12:47
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Re: How about a gardening thread?

Soon soon, the best of all smells will be wafting again through my bedroom window as the flowers of the big elder tree are ready to open




Unfortunately the tree is positioned so awful and the flowers unreachable, that I have to go to the forest etc to forage for the flowers to make a gazillion different things with it.

I <3 Elder
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Old 25.05.2016, 12:59
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Re: How about a gardening thread?

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My first post in the gardening thread, usually I hang around pet corner so hello everyone! We have recently moved into a mountain farm at 800m. Previous owners had far greener fingers that us so I am desperately trying not to kill plants and shrubs.... We cleared a south facing slope (picture attached) last week and are wondering what to plant that will a) look nice, b) be really low maintenance and c) be bullet proof as we look after dogs. We are thinking of alpine heather? We would welcome any suggestions thanks!
This is a very nicely sized space and with that slope/altitude I would see an Alpine rock garden. Pretty low maintenance and dogs won't like sitting on rocks. Oh and the plants will grow pretty well too!

how-about-gardening-thread-20160521_164606.jpg

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  #1158  
Old 25.05.2016, 13:34
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Re: How about a gardening thread?

Anyone here have their vegetable garden suffering from "root maggots"?

Suddenly wilting plants of the cabbage family - pulled then up expecting to find a cut-worm, and found large quantities of tiny white maggots clustered around and devouring the fine roots deep down.

Apparently it`s a certain fly that lays eggs at the base of newly planted seedlings, they hatch and the worms go down to eat the roots - multiplying themselves every 10 days! Horrible things.

Other than spraying all one can do is tightly pack the earth down with clear plastic and "cook" everything. Or spray with poison.
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Old 25.05.2016, 23:51
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Re: How about a gardening thread?

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Anyone here have their vegetable garden suffering from "root maggots"?

Suddenly wilting plants of the cabbage family - pulled then up expecting to find a cut-worm, and found large quantities of tiny white maggots clustered around and devouring the fine roots deep down.

Apparently it`s a certain fly that lays eggs at the base of newly planted seedlings, they hatch and the worms go down to eat the roots - multiplying themselves every 10 days! Horrible things.

Other than spraying all one can do is tightly pack the earth down with clear plastic and "cook" everything. Or spray with poison.
Here's some info Smoky:

http://www.gardeningknowhow.com/plan...ot-maggots.htm

Diatomaceous earth is available from Andermatt Biogarten. Pricey, but it doesnt take much. The row covers look to be the best option..
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Old 26.05.2016, 21:04
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Re: How about a gardening thread?

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I'm digging out what feels like hundreds of irises in our garden to extend the lawn and make room for a second soccer goal. He things we do for our kids!

Anyway, I'd be happy to share irises with anyone interested.
The irises are doing really well here but I wasn't expecting this colour. a Thanks very much for them.
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