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Gravelly soil

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Gravelly soil

Postby erikacon » Jul 08, 2012 10:25 am

We live in Hastings Ontario. It's very pretty countryside with rolling hills. The soil around here tends to be rocky which makes for interesting stone work but challenging gardening.

We need to grow something - anything tall and thick along our border which is about 100 feet in length. The soil, if you can call it that, is gravelly and it seems nothing wants to grow there. I've dug out and replaced some of it with soil but it seems like an endless battle. To give you an idea, I couldn't use a shovel so the only thing that worked for me was a pickax. That loosened the gravel. I could then use the shovel to lift out the gravel and replace with topsoil. I've planted miscantheus giganteus which is supposed to grow to 10 or 12 feet. We'll see. Do you think I should rethink this and grow something else? If so, what?

I'm open to all ideas and thank you in advance.
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Re: Gravelly soil

Postby B_BQ » Jul 08, 2012 12:50 pm

Hi: I'm in Belleville. Parts of my garden are very rocky too and it's been a challenge to get some things to grow. We too wanted to plant something to act as a hedge.

The first thing is that you really have to dig a very large hole, or a very deep trench for a hedge, so that you can replace the rocky soil with some good growing medium. In your case you may need a backhoe to trench 100 feet and bring in a couple of loads of topsoil!!

The plants we've had the most success with have been Bridal Wreath Spirea, Regular Gold Mount Spirea, (it can get quite big), Ninebark 'Diablo', (this has done extremely well), and Annabelle Hydrangea.

I'm babying along a Golden Elder in the hopes it will grow big and lush!

Weigela has done very well too.

Zone 5b
South/Central Ontario

Every day may not be good, but there's something good in every day
~ Author Unknown
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Re: Gravelly soil

Postby erikacon » Jul 08, 2012 12:58 pm

Hello Belleville and thanks for responding. I know I have to dig more. Oh, my aching back.

I planted a golden elderberry and it seems to be growing fine. The only question I have is - why are my leaves going brown. I thought it was fungus and so I sprayed but they are still changing in parts.
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