Low Growing Shrubs

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Fermi

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Low Growing Shrubs
« on: December 22, 2018, 01:41:50 PM »
I was looking for a topic to post pics of some shrubs which are quite low and could almost be ground-covers so thought I'd start this as a new topic.
Relhania pungens is from South Africa. It has sharp foliage which is green on top and silver underneath. The flowers are bright yellow daisies and are produced en masse. I discovered that the dried foliage burns very quickly! I wonder whether it has evolved to burn as part of bush regeneration the way a lot of the Australian bush does.
It's in flower now at mid-summer,
cheers
fermi
Mr F de Sousa, Central Victoria, Australia
member of AGS, SRGC, NARGS
working as a physio to support my gardening habit!

Umbrian

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Re: Low Growing Shrubs
« Reply #1 on: December 23, 2018, 08:44:40 AM »
Good idea Fermi - another continuing thread to look forward to.
Season's greetings to you and all our Australian members who's Christmas weather is so different to ours  - although we are promised a sunny day after many gloomy wet ones.
MGS member living and gardening in Umbria, Italy for past 19 years. Recently moved from my original house and now planning and planting a new small garden.

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Fermi

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Re: Low Growing Shrubs
« Reply #2 on: December 23, 2018, 12:56:55 PM »
Teucrium subspinosum comes from Mallorca (according to the internet!)
Mine came from a friend in the Dandenongs  ;D about 15 years ago.
It is quite drought tolerant and withstands frosts down to -7oC.
It flowers in summer with small mauve flowers and is apparently a magnet for cats (ours are kept indoors so can not confirm this)
cheers
fermi
Mr F de Sousa, Central Victoria, Australia
member of AGS, SRGC, NARGS
working as a physio to support my gardening habit!

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John J

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Re: Low Growing Shrubs
« Reply #3 on: December 23, 2018, 01:25:44 PM »
Fermi, I can most definitely confirm your allegation regarding the cats.  >:( We have 7 plants in a row and have had to resort to a number of methods in an attempt to deter not just our own cats but the strays of the neighbourhood from not only sniffing them but rolling on them. They're addicted to them.
Cyprus Branch Head. Gardens in a field 40 m above sea level with reasonably fertile clay soil.
"Aphrodite emerged from the sea and came ashore and at her feet all manner of plants sprang forth" John Deacon (13thC AD)

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Fermi

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Re: Low Growing Shrubs
« Reply #4 on: December 29, 2018, 11:22:34 AM »
Hi John,
good to have confirmation  ;D
Another teucrium we grow that is sold here as "Cat Thyme" is Teucrium marum.
When we did have an outdoor cat she enjoyed rolling in this in utter ecstasy! Since she's been gone a few years you can see that the plant has become a bit overgrown - I must cut it back severely after flowering
cheers
fermi
Mr F de Sousa, Central Victoria, Australia
member of AGS, SRGC, NARGS
working as a physio to support my gardening habit!

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Fermi

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Re: Low Growing Shrubs
« Reply #5 on: January 01, 2019, 02:33:48 PM »
Goodenia ovata is a native of Australia and this variety is a ground covering plant with the typical yellow "violet-like" flowers
cheers
fermi
Mr F de Sousa, Central Victoria, Australia
member of AGS, SRGC, NARGS
working as a physio to support my gardening habit!

Umbrian

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Re: Low Growing Shrubs
« Reply #6 on: January 02, 2019, 08:40:02 AM »
New one to me Fermi - very unusual and pretty little flowers in close up. I love ground covering plants as long as they are not too aggressive. They protect the soil from extremes of weather and can afford protection to other plants if used wisely.
MGS member living and gardening in Umbria, Italy for past 19 years. Recently moved from my original house and now planning and planting a new small garden.

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Fermi

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Re: Low Growing Shrubs
« Reply #7 on: January 03, 2019, 11:55:45 AM »
Hi Carole,
yes, that Goodenia is an effective ground cover but it has taken a few years to become thick enough to do that.
Another Australian plant is Eremophila biserrata which trails along the ground but doesn't seem to produce enough growth to make it a "ground-cover" but it has interesting tubular flowers which attract the nectar feeding birds
cheers
fermi
Mr F de Sousa, Central Victoria, Australia
member of AGS, SRGC, NARGS
working as a physio to support my gardening habit!

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Fermi

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Re: Low Growing Shrubs
« Reply #8 on: January 15, 2019, 03:37:00 PM »
Ceratostigma wilmottiana ‘Forest Blue’ grows well in part shade on the south (cooler) side of our house.
We got this years ago and it has slowly increased it size but has stayed fairly low.
The colour of the flowers can be quite intense but they wilt quickly in the heat  - not surprisingly since one of it's common names is "Tibetan Plumbago".
The foliage is a fresh light green which can turn red or orange before shedding in autumn
cheers
fermi
Mr F de Sousa, Central Victoria, Australia
member of AGS, SRGC, NARGS
working as a physio to support my gardening habit!

David Dickinson

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Re: Low Growing Shrubs
« Reply #9 on: January 15, 2019, 11:43:18 PM »
Hi Fermi

My Ceratostigma, like yours, prefers some shade. At first I gave it too much shade and the leaves grew very big and the stems lank. After I gave it a little more light and a couple of hours direct sun mid-afternoon it very quickly produced new growth which was better proportioned. It also flowered very profusely which it had not done before. Now it has its winter red leaves. Looks good all year round for me.
I have a small garden in Rome, Italy. Some open soil, some concrete, some paved. Temperatures in winter occasionally down to 0°C. Summer temperatures up to 40°C in the shade. There are never watering restrictions but, of course, there is little natural water for much of June, July and August.

Umbrian

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Re: Low Growing Shrubs
« Reply #10 on: January 16, 2019, 08:37:03 AM »
I have Ceratostigma plumbaginoides that also works well as a relatively low ground cover shrub. It has an arching habit and spreads well even in dry soil flowering profusely over a long period.. Another good blue subject.
MGS member living and gardening in Umbria, Italy for past 19 years. Recently moved from my original house and now planning and planting a new small garden.

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Fermi

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Re: Low Growing Shrubs
« Reply #11 on: July 29, 2019, 05:19:56 AM »
One of our favourite low shrubs is the prostrate rosemary, Rosmarinus officinalis "Prostratus" ( I've been told this could be lumped into Salvia as Salvia rosmarina "Prostrata"!) - in the middle of winter it is alive with bees gathering nectar from its pale blue flowers.
It trails over rocks and the edges of beds very effectively,
cheers
fermi
Mr F de Sousa, Central Victoria, Australia
member of AGS, SRGC, NARGS
working as a physio to support my gardening habit!

David Dickinson

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Re: Low Growing Shrubs
« Reply #12 on: July 29, 2019, 11:38:48 PM »
Hi Fermi,

Good to see your earlier posting of Teucrium marum. I saw it at a garden centre while I was visiting Umbrian this weekend and decided to buy one immediately.

My neighbour has cats but they don't wander out from their home. Notice I say "their" house and not "my neighbour's"  :-) There are one or two strays around one of which took up residence in a sunny spot in my garden for a short while.  I am afraid that using the shade of my lemon tree as a toilet got too much so I chopped up lots of thick twigs and stood them vertically both in the cat's favourite basking place and under the lemon tree. They did the cat no harm. They simply prevented him from sprawling out and from crouching and so he left to find a place where he was more welcome. Hope the new Teucrium doesn't entice him back!
I have a small garden in Rome, Italy. Some open soil, some concrete, some paved. Temperatures in winter occasionally down to 0°C. Summer temperatures up to 40°C in the shade. There are never watering restrictions but, of course, there is little natural water for much of June, July and August.

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Fermi

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Re: Low Growing Shrubs
« Reply #13 on: August 04, 2019, 02:58:27 PM »
Hi David,
you'll have to let us know how you go!
Here's a dwarf shrub from near the Victorian/South Australian border, Pomaderris obcordata 'Mallee Princess' which flowers in winter
cheers
fermi
Mr F de Sousa, Central Victoria, Australia
member of AGS, SRGC, NARGS
working as a physio to support my gardening habit!

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Alisdair

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Re: Low Growing Shrubs
« Reply #14 on: August 05, 2019, 04:59:18 AM »
Wow!
Alisdair Aird
Gardens in SE England (Sussex); also coastal Southern Greece, and (in a very small way) South West France; MGS member (and former president); vice chairman RHS Lily Group, past chairman Cyclamen Society