The attraction of buying alpines for your garden:
Alpines take up only a small space in your garden and that means you can have a quite a number of plants in:
- a really small city courtyard,
- window boxes,
- a small bed by the front door,
- a raised bed on the patio,
- your pathways, (yes you can get ones that don’t mind being trodden on!), or
- the front of your borders.
Guidelines for buying alpines regarding looking good all the year:
In your small space you need to buy alpines that together have interest the whole year round.
The first challenge is getting a few plants that look great through the winter time.
A good place to start is by looking at our evergreen plants – which means they won’t look totally dead in the winter!
So the first tip is to buy alpine plants that look good in the winter.
The second most difficult season is the autumn, so buy some alpines that look good then – our list of autumn flowering plants has a surprising number of alpines.
As far as alpines are concerned it is easy to find many that will flower in the spring, so buy the alpines that are on our spring flowering list.
That now only leaves the summer time, and again there are many alpines, so choose from our summer flowering list.
Guidelines for what alpines to buy regarding sizes:
If your planting space is really small, then consider buying alpines from our really compact 5cm wide to 20cm wide range.
It gets frustrating when you’ve planted your compact alpines and then you buy one that turns out to be a real thug and completely smothers the other alpines!
You may have a little more space and you could buy the alpines from our fairly compact 25cm wide to 30cm wide range.
When buying alpines remember to think about how much sunshine your area has:
Basically there are three different sites:
- If it has sunshine most of the day then buy the alpines from the plants for full sun list.
- If it never gets any direct sun, like by a north facing wall, then buy the alpines from the plants for shade list.
- If it gets some direct sunshine and some shade through the day, then buy the alpines from the plants for partial shade list.
Guidelines for buying alpines regarding soil:
If you are planting alpines in a container, then you will need to buy a compost to fill it.
Avoid the compost that is full of very fine particles, or that is based on sedge peat, because the drainage will not be good and it can cause the roots to rot.
If you go for a peat based or other non-soil based compost it will dry out quickly, so buy some soil based compost to mix in with it.
If you are planting alpines in your garden, it is always good to incorporate some soil improver so that it improves the drainage and gives the soil some more organic matter.
If you have a clay soil then you will need to buy alpines from our plants for clay soils list.
So if you haven’t got massive plans for your entire garden, then you could concentrate on the little spaces nearest to your doorways, or pathways, or patio.
It’s amazing how much pleasure a few plants can bring to your life!