Rhodendron ‘Albert Schweitzer’ has gone from the woodland back corner! I decided to take him out and build a curved screen to hide the space at the back with the wildlife hotel, dove house, dalek compost bin and sacks of leaves collected from the garden, to include a flower bed at the front with the stone seat.
The plan is the screen will eventually blend in with the rest of the woodland garden as it is covered with foliage so that it doesn’t just look like a screen; the climbers would be able to grow up and over it forming a bit of a roof too. Instead of just using two posts and trellis I upcycled a neighbour’s metal tubular bunk-bed, angled its ends and fitted one of its top sides across the middle so that I could fit my upright supports of wood along to form a curve. A few upright planks and cross pieces give it strength at the back, two long and very thick bamboo poles saved from a stand at work years ago stand at each end, then a cover of chicken wire and heather screening saved from a previous project to give the plants something to climb up.
I chiselled out the dry hard clay soil at the front, added some good soil and buried a seeper hose across it. Later I’ll attach some hosing to a water source for recycled water to keep the bed damp during summer, this will hide behind the screen at the side.
I’ve planted Clematis ‘Broughton Bride’, ‘Betty Corning’ and Snow Queen’, these should mingle as they grow. A honeysuckle Lonicera per. ‘Serotina’ is in the middle so that it can grow up and across the top an onwards.
At each outer post is a young Fatshedera x lizei plant that I’ve grown from cuttings from plants already in the garden. Below are ferns, a hosta, a spreading dead nettle, a pretty spring flowering saxifraga and some groups of dwarf daffodils, ‘Tête-a-tête’. The seat stands almost in the middle but close to the front of the bed so that I can put my feet on the path.
I’ve planted another Clematis ‘Broughton Bride’ near the beginning of the woodland garden and will repeat plant the other clematis later in different spots so they don’t just appear at the screen.
It all looks a little bare right now, but it will grow!