With so many of us spending more time at home, it’s understandable that we’re putting a lot of time and effort into making our garden look its best. We have put together this handy planting guide to help you create stunning planting schemes.
What you will need
• Your planter of choice; we used one of London Stone’s aluminium trough planters.
• Leca® growing medium.
• Peat-free compost. We used Dalefoot Wool Compost for Potting.
• Your choice of plants; we used Geum ‘Totally Tangerine’, Nepeta racemosa ‘Walker’s Low’, Salvia x sylvestris ‘Mainacht’, Allium nigrum.
Before you start
The first thing you should do before you start your planting is to be sure that your plant-pot of choice has adequate drainage. Take a look at the bottom of your planter and check that there are existing holes, or maybe removable plugs. If your planter is staying inside, you may want to place the planter on a saucer to ensure there are no water overspills.
Whether the water drains away into a reservoir, is resting on pot-feet or a rubber mat, the key is to be sure that water can drain out of your planter. This is very important. Water must have somewhere to drain away, to avoid your plants getting root rot.
Before you start filling your planter, you should also consider its final location. If you are using a large plant pot it may become heavy and difficult to move once filled. It can be the easier option to choose your location and place your planter there before you begin filling.
The first thing you will want to put in your planter is Leca® soil. Leca® is a growing medium made of lightweight baked clay pebbles. The purpose of Leca® is to provide some drainage straight away for the pot, allowing water to easily drain through. You should aim to fill your planter with Leca® up to about 30cm from the surface of the pot. For our planter it required one full 50-litre bag.
Next, fill your planter with peat-free compost. We choose to use peat-free compost as it is the better choice for the environment, helping to reduce the amount of carbon in the atmosphere and tackling climate change. Fill the remainder of your planter with the compost, up to about 2.5cms below the top. When you do this, break up any large clumps that you see. Our planter required roughly one and a half 30-litre bags.
You are now ready to put in your plants. We’ve chosen to use all perennials, so that these plants will come back year after year. We chose an early summer colour palette and bee- and wildlife-friendly plants—all are recommended by the RHS as Plants for Pollinators. In our planter we have Geum ‘Totally Tangerine’, a previous Chelsea Flower Show Plant of the Year shortlisted, Nepeta racemosa ‘Walker’s Low’, Salvia x sylvestris ‘Mainacht’ and Allium nigrum. The colours beautifully complement each other to create a vibrant result.
Make space for each plant in your planter, using your hands or a trowel to make gaps for them to rest in the compost. Carefully remove each of the plants from its pot by lightly squeezing the edges and tapping the bottom. Once your plant has been safely removed from the pot, it can be replanted into the planter. Ensure that the level of the compost around the plant is flush with the compost in the planter. Repeat this process until all your plants are happily repotted in their new planter home.
All these perennials are currently available to order directly from us, as is the peat-free compost. The planters can be order online at London Stone. If you have any more questions about planting, our experienced staff members are on hand, ready to help!