Sedums at the Wind Plaza

Sedums may not usually be considered to be formal plants but when the garden had to be remodelled a bit after the removal of the disastrous Wind Turbine I had to put my thinking cap on to come up with a way to cope with a large area of very poor soil surrounding a 2 metre square foundation.

Wind Turbine in place 2011

The foundation was actually 2 CUBIC metres of poured concrete so removing it wasn’t an option! The first task was to cover the foundation with paving slabs and surrounding it with raised beds.

Wind Plaza and Raised Beds 2012

The original raised beds made from recycled scaffolding boards lasted for a few years but now the beds are simply edged with large stones (of which I seem to have an indefinite supply from other projects!) and they have been colonised by a wonderful spreading Campanula that is a sight to behold in early Summer – but now they are going over so the sedums come into focus!

The surrounding area had very little topsoil due to the excavations for the deep foundation so rather than try and recover the soil I looked around for something that would cope with it – and up steps Sedum! I had a large clump of a Sedum called “Green Mantle” that was doing well, so that was the starting point. I was gifted lots of different varieties of low-growing sedums from various gardening friends and so I had a project for the winter!

Not having a lot of experience of propagating anything, I was taking no chances. Over 200 little pots with scraps of Green mantle and at least 50 more with pieces of the other varieties were carefully nurtuted, pampered, protected, even kept warm, in my little greenhouse for the winter.

I laid out a pattern with some left-over red bricks and we drew several trailers of sand and gravel and covered the area and levelled it for planting. Then the sedums were liberated from the greenhouse and I was really afraid I hadn’t enough plants!

As the years went by I concentrated the different varieties into the “petals” of the flower shape and I just let the Green Mantle do its own thing to a large extent! It has self-seeded to almost every border of the garden by now, and every time I look at them I am reminded of the pampering they got that first winter

The best grower of the Petal Sedums Sedum spurium coccinea

This one is a Sedum spurium coccinea from a friend.

Sedum spurium album is the main plant here but there is a piece with pale mauve flowers behind the tree!

I have more varieties than petals, but the main idea is to make a contrast with Green Mantle!

Sedum album is a great spreader too! The little pearl-like leaves root very easily.

Some of the sedums are a bit later coming into flower and this next one is one I have used as a border in the front garden too!

Sedum spathulifolium ‘Purpureum’ has low-growing bright yellow flowers in late summer.

This is possibly my favourite of the low-growng sedums because the leaves are very beautiful all year round – taking on a pinkish tone in autumn!

The centrepiece for the Sedum Garden is Viburnum Plicatum Mariesii which flowers while the sedums are only waking up after the winter!

So my final photo is how it looks today! The Wind Plaza is glimpsed on the right. To the upper edge the Rose Ghislaine de Feligondeand is still flowering well, and the Willow Fence has been given a summer trim to allow the path at the top to be used!

The Sedum Garden

The Green Mantle sedum that is the main feature of this garden is found in profusion all round the garden. The maintenance on this feature garden is not onerous! In Spring the old foliage needs to be removed – I have used a lawnmower to do this on occasions! However, the manual removal is more effective as they are cut down asl low as possible and the cut materials removed! Because of the excellent ground cover weeds struggle to gain a foothold, but those that do are easliy removed because of the sandy nature of the soil. Then in early Autumn the time spent removing the dead flowers is well worth it because it allows the lovely autumn colour to be seen at its best!

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