Planting ideas around compost area

edited 30 November -1 at 1:00AM in Greenfingered MoneySaving
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segovia1segovia1 Forumite
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edited 30 November -1 at 1:00AM in Greenfingered MoneySaving
I’m creating a new compost area at the back of my garden. It will be tucked away in one of the corners but a reasonable size (maybe 20ft by 20ft). I’m going to put some compost bins in the very back corner of the area against a wooden fence, but would like some ideas on what I could plant as a screen (I’ll also have some stepping stones to get from the lawn area of the garden to the compost area). The area is south facing but quite heavily shaded by trees belonging to my neighbour. And from the house (and most of the garden) the compost area won’t be visible. Partly because it’s tucked away in the corner but also because a large shed will hide it. I was thinking bamboo as something that will be shade-tolerant and grow easily and not need too much tending. But any other thoughts? Perhaps there’s room for a couple of small trees - but what species to go for?
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  • -taff-taff Forumite
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    fruit trees? Whatever you plant in a compost area will probably go mental because of all the nutrients in the soil.
  • Silence101Silence101 Forumite
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    Not bamboo! It'll spread everywhere! Except if you plant it in pots possibly. It's also almost impossible to kill, so you might find it hard to control. Maybe a bush of some kind?
  • madjackslammadjackslam Forumite
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    -taff is right. My compost bins are surrounded by nettles, wild roses and brambles, all of which grow like crazy. I would suggest climbers that tolerate shade, such as honeysuckle. You really want non-thorny trees and shrubs, otherwise they are a pain (literally) when they start growing over your bins. I'd be tempted by hazel, hornbeam (which keeps its leaves on for a bit in the winter), or for something more decorative maybe cotinus?
  • FarwayFarway Forumite
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    Black or other currants?

    They love rich soils and can be left to just get on with it, or you can prune if you want to
  • glasgowdanglasgowdan Forumite
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    My customer's compost areas are surrounded by things such as Laurel and Rhododendrons. Nice plants, in leaf all year and easy to maintain.
  • DavesnaveDavesnave Forumite
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    Silence101 wrote: »
    Not bamboo! It'll spread everywhere! Except if you plant it in pots possibly. It's also almost impossible to kill, so you might find it hard to control. Maybe a bush of some kind?
    People who don't know there are essentially two types of bamboo always say this. The clumping varieties don't spread and therefore cost a lot. The RHS use them in a garden near me, but what do they know about plants, eh?
    glasgowdan wrote: »
    My customer's compost areas are surrounded by things such as Laurel and Rhododendrons. Nice plants, in leaf all year and easy to maintain.

    Laurel is quicker, though not as nice as eleagnus ebbingei or prunus lusitanica, but they'll all grow in shaded conditions, as will viburnum tinus. Rhododendrons, unlike the others, won't grow everywhere. If the soil is notably alkaline, they will die; not that DIY sheds and similar places selling them nationwide will care!
    People who don't stand for something will fall for anything.
  • glasgowdanglasgowdan Forumite
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    Davesnave wrote: »

    Laurel is quicker, though not as nice as eleagnus ebbingei or prunus lusitanica, !

    That depends on the eye of whoever is looking at them!
  • edited 22 September 2017 at 2:42PM
    DavesnaveDavesnave Forumite
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    edited 22 September 2017 at 2:42PM
    glasgowdan wrote: »
    That depends on the eye of whoever is looking at them!

    Very true. Just sharing my opinion, having used them all. Other opinions are available.

    But even among laurels there are clones that are 'better' than others, in the sense that they are more dense, have more interesting foliage and cost more. e.g 'Etna.'

    The neighbour I don't like gets the bog-standard, self sown stuff from the roadside on his boundary!
    People who don't stand for something will fall for anything.
  • Jojo_the_TightfistedJojo_the_Tightfisted Forumite
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    segovia1 wrote: »
    I’m creating a new compost area at the back of my garden. It will be tucked away in one of the corners but a reasonable size (maybe 20ft by 20ft). I’m going to put some compost bins in the very back corner of the area against a wooden fence, but would like some ideas on what I could plant as a screen (I’ll also have some stepping stones to get from the lawn area of the garden to the compost area). The area is south facing but quite heavily shaded by trees belonging to my neighbour. And from the house (and most of the garden) the compost area won’t be visible. Partly because it’s tucked away in the corner but also because a large shed will hide it. I was thinking bamboo as something that will be shade-tolerant and grow easily and not need too much tending. But any other thoughts? Perhaps there’s room for a couple of small trees - but what species to go for?

    Something useful. Laurel is of no use to man nor beast, for example, and nowt grows underneath due to the toxic chemicals the plant contains - it also requires continued management to ensure it doesn't become a bloody great tree, a massive bush or, as it spreads easily through layering, root runs or just leaving a chopped bit on the ground by accident, it just invades the entire garden.

    Could you perhaps look at various fruit trees? You can get grafted apple, for example, where you get different varieties on one relatively small tree; maybe hazel would be a plan - if looked after, you could supply your own plant sticks within a few years or just enjoy the nuts the squirrels and jays don't get. Or a dwarf cherry? That way you get blossom and fruit fairly quickly - and as it still gets sun, but is sheltered, the fruit is more likely to be able to ripen undiscovered by pigeons.


    Because I want the security of something with evil spikes attached, I've got a Pyracantha in a completely shaded spot against the wall and shed - all I do is lop off the horizontals to stop it spreading sideways and there's nesting and food for bugs and birds in one go - something like Blackthorn would be great, especially if you like sloe gin :D - if I had thought about it longer at the time, I'd have planted that instead.
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  • DavesnaveDavesnave Forumite
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    . Laurel is of no use to man nor beast, for example, and nowt grows underneath due to the toxic chemicals the plant contains - it also requires continued management to ensure it doesn't become a bloody great tree, a massive bush or, as it spreads easily through layering, root runs or just leaving a chopped bit on the ground by accident, it just invades the entire garden.

    Hate to disagree, but there are clones that don't do that. Like bamboo, laurels all get tarred with the same brush.

    This one, for example, has an AGM:

    https://www.rhs.org.uk/Plants/99043/Prunus-laurocerasus-Otto-Luyken/Details

    There is a place for fast-growing, sound-absorbing, screening evergreens, but I'll admit the wildlife credentials of laurel are pretty poor. Even the lowly leylandii is good for nesting.
    People who don't stand for something will fall for anything.
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