The final touches to arrange the outdoor space are underway, even if the temperatures are not the most suitable for large maneuvers. If it is only a question of giving a little balance to the volumes of the vegetation to create a harmonious whole, we can plant some evergreen garden plants, as long as they are rustic and strong.
Simplicity wins and tells us not to exceed in variety. Rather, a nice mix of green tones and foliage textures should be created. Let’s take a cue from spontaneous compositions that we see in parks or along our coasts, where robust and drought-resistant bushes, including myrtles and mastic, colonize large areas of land.
The principle is that of create favorable micro habitats to the development of the species we have selected and, at the same time, to create projects of character. Easy to say but also to do, just a few suggestions.
In the quite sunny gardens, we plant gods bossi given to drink in the form of sferica to give a refined touch. Or we can opt for Pittosforum tobira nanum, cheaper than boxwood and very resistant, also useful as a ground cover in flower beds and borders. To the compact forms of shrubs such as boxwood and pittosporum, we combine more lively plants, such as grasses, making them vital with the strong chromatic accents of herbaceous plants that love to sway in the wind, the hole between these.
We do not forget and follow, they too are part of the evergreen décor of the garden. The options vary according to the style: they range from large, perfectly compact grassy surfaces to rustic ones, which are preferred for a lower water requirement, up to the tiny squares of lawn, made in contrast with disheveled and wild plants, a trend very popular in the countries beyond the Alps.
Lastly, we pay attention to the space dedicated to conviviality, signaling it with a mat or a different flooring, of wood or of gravel. The evergreen plants selected in the gallery are all robust and reliable, easy to find in nurseries. Here are our proposals.
Boxwood and Allium
Boxwood is the classic evergreen shrub that should never be missing in a well exposed, elegant garden suitable for creating a permanent design with a classic style. It is perfect to combine with Allium and colorful herbs such as Verbena bonariensis.
The laurel can be grown in many ways thanks to its rusticity, in the ground or in pots, as a hedge or as a solo specimen. It does not fear drought but it is important to fertilize and carry out continuous treatments to preserve the leaves from brown cochineal.
Azaleas are evergreen shrubs that suit the cooler climates of northern Italy, with rich and humid soils, conducive to acidophilic plants. The perfect composition of the border is obtained by planting many varieties of azaleas, in this way harmony and botanical characteristics prevail.
The grasses are grown in borders or to move rocky surfaces, even near ponds. The habit of the plant is expanded and takes on different colors depending on the season, yellow or bronze and green. They give volume to the garden and do not ask for much attention, rather they should be planted without being afraid of overdoing the quantity.
Gaura is a perennial herb that loves sunny exposures and well-drained soil. It plants itself by creating repeated spots in the vegetation that forms the background. Full sun, drained soil, low water requirement.
In our country, the genus Hosta is still not very widespread as an ornamental plant, while it is easy to come across dense patches of this vegetation in natural habitats. Very shady and humid gardens, it develops quickly and has a lot to offer also from an aesthetic point of view.
Ground cover or hanging, the fragrant pointed juniper leaves adapt to geometric pruning or occupy interstices between rocks, otherwise difficult to fill. The Juniperus genus includes many dark green and glaucous green tree and shrub species. Likes shade and moist substrates.
Ilex is a long-lived evergreen shrub, loved primarily for its red berries. Its slender and austere shape decorates walls if planted in rows or creates focal points. In summer, the color intensity tends to decrease. Suitable for shady gardens.
Phormium is a showy evergreen herb that suits large borders for its large bundles of variegated foliage. It loves warm climates, mostly Mediterranean gardens also exposed to the sea wind.
Pittosporum tobira nanum
Pittosporum tobira nanum is a vigorous, medium-height evergreen shrub that is used to cover the ground with flower beds and borders and is the background for more colorful species. It prefers sun and well-drained soils, tolerates shade but suffers from the compactness and glossy color of the leaves.
No wonder English gardeners have a passion for herbaceous perennials. Beautiful to look at and easy to grow. Use them casually, grouping them into groups to create splashes of color. This is an Echinacea.
To develop the Mediterranean theme, the oleander is an excellent ally. The drastic pruning to which it is often subjected mortifies its bearing. We can breed it as a single specimen, in this case you can thin the stem at the base to make it more graceful. Full sun, drained soils, tolerates brackish wind.
One is often led not to consider the lawn as an accessory piece of furniture, while on its own it can hold up the design of a garden. Rustic lawns grow from mixes of fescue seeds ready to buy in the nursery, sometimes mixed with and ground cover grasses.
Even in a small garden we can be inspired by the style of English cottages, creating voluminous corners with evergreen plants. The so-called shrub or landscape roses have a bushy habit, thin and dense branches and bloom several times a year with cluster flowers. Full sun and enriched soil without water stagnation.
The colors and leaves of the daisy bush give freshness to the garden, even better if there is a dark and compact background at the base. In winter the compactness of the foliage changes and if it is very cold they behave as strippers.
In apertura, foto Richard Bloom, progetto Helen Elks-Smith, Modern Garden Winchester, Southampton, UK.
Sonia Santella green designer
Born in Rome, trained in Stockholm and around Europe. In addition to designing them, I love to tell about gardens in books and reportages. I live in the capital in a 1920s house, with a son and two dogs. The idea for a project comes out when you least expect it, but to realize it you need a good ability to synthesize: before adding we choose what to remove. Garden or terrace, simplicity wins, harmony of volumes, settings that express a choice of style. I have another passion, the facades of period houses, a real obsession. This is my site
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