Stones and plants come together in sloping massifs. The rockeries are arrangements made with finesse for a result as natural as modern. Find out how to set up a rock garden at home
Inspired by natural mountain landscapes, rock gardens harmoniously mix rocks and plants . These arrangements perfectly match the slopes and the approaches to the terraces.
A rock garden is laid out on a sloping surface, with a rather light, drained, or even dry soil. If yours is clay, it will need to be cut with sand. Find out how to do it step by step:
- 1. Define the space to be arranged. It must be covered with a layer of soil, even thin to be able to plant.
- 2. Prepare the soil by removing the weeds.
- 3. Start by arranging the rocks randomly. Point of alignment or symmetry in line of sight, but the irregularity of nature.
- 4. Between the stones, simply place your plants in pots. Then take a step back to admire the rendering. Remember to respect the distances between each plant, you must take into account that they will develop. Ultimately, the plants must appear to emerge from between the stones, as in nature!
- 5. When you are satisfied with this preview, all that remains is to plant!
The objective is to have a natural appearance, the opposite would only lose its splendor to this arrangement. For this, nothing like local stones. You can start as close as possible: in your garden! There are always some stones lying around in the garden soil, take the reflex to recover them. You can then go for a walk in a forest, to glean some pretty rocks. Finally, taking a walk on the side of a river is not a bad idea! You will inevitably find some stones to complete your collection. Be careful not to rob the river either.
Rockery plants are content with poor, dry soil and enjoy sunny exposure. The dwarf varieties of conifers are often used. They have the advantage of quickly filling the massif and being attractive all year round. This is the case of juniper and pine! For the touch of color, think of the flowers found in the mountains like the Alpine aster, bellflowers, Edelweiss, or even the thyme. You can combine them with other dry soil plants such as sedum and scabious. All you have to do is add a little volume with lavender and dwarf charcoals.
How to make a maintenance-free rock garden?
By definition, the rock garden does not require much maintenance since it consists of undemanding plants used to poor soils. Remember to fill in the gaps by adding stones when the need arises. It will still need a little watering after planting, then save it for hot periods. The stones and pebbles will damn lessen the drudgery of weeding but it is possible that certain adventitious weeds manage to interfere. In this case, tear them off as soon as they appear.
Sloping rock garden
Like mountain landscapes, rock gardens are laid out on sloping gardens. There are then two solutions:
You already have natural slopes, you just have to define the area of the rock garden that you want to develop.
Your garden is flat, it will then be necessary to create embankments. To do this, you can build an elevated terrace and create a slope that links to the garden. Sometimes it’s a matter of going down to the garage, you keep a little corner that you can plant in rock gardens. Otherwise, favor the limits of the garden, a bump in the middle, it is not very aesthetic.
Mediterranean style rock garden case
From the rock garden to the Mediterranean garden, there is only one step! Indeed, Mediterranean plants have quite similar requirements since they require dry soil and sun. We then put on thyme, rosemary, lavender, Perovskia, but also agaves and Aloe vera. Unlike a classic massif, we add garrigue limestone and also a mineral mulch to dress all the rock between the plants. The rock gardens are then retained by restanques, these dry stone walls typical of Provence.
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