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Phormium bed 1999

06 Oct 2005

This page: Preparation - Planting



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In the summer of 1999 we decided to set up a bed containing phormiums only. We had an area of rough lawn that we thought would be a suitable site, so we began by marking out a circle of 4 m diameter. Various young potted phormiums were then stood in the circle to see how they would look.

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16 August 1999

The ground was then dug over, the turf buried and some well rotted compost added. The result of this was that the level was now slightly higher than the surrounding lawn and we hoped that this would help with drainage.

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20 August 1999

Next, the soil was covered with Mypex ground cover held in position around the edge of the bed by small paving bricks.

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21 August 1999

Guide lines were stretched across the bed and the pots arranged in a symmetrical pattern with contrasting colours next to each other.

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22 August 1999





Holes were cut in the ground cover and the phormiums planted through them.

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22 August 1999

The surface between the plants was then covered with horticultural grit.

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26 August 1999

The edges were tidied up by filling in the gaps with more bricks and completing the covering of horticultural grit.

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3 September 1999

A total of 31 different varieties were planted:

Phormium tenax and P. cookianum together with the following cultivars:

Apricot Queen, Black Edge, Bronze, Bronze Baby, Co-ordination, Copper Beauty, Coppershine, Dark Delight, Duet, Emerald Isle, Emerald Pink, Evening Glow, Gold Sword, Jack Spratt, Jester, Maori Sunrise, Pink Panther, Pink Stripe, Platt’s Black, Rainbow Maiden, Rubra, Sundance, Surfer Boy, Thumbelina, Tom Thumb, Tricolor, Yellow Wave.

All of the plants appeared to settle in well but as it was relatively late in the year there was not much growth before winter set in. 

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5 November 1999

All of the young plants survived the first winter. This was not a particularly severe winter but we had a number of hard frosts and several days where the ground remained frozen all day. 

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