Shrub bulb and plant advice for north facing boundary……novice gardener

As stated in title, I know almost nothing about plants etc. I’m trying to smarten up my very large garden but having to do it in stages. At the moment I’m tackling the ‘yard’ area (in between drive and carport)

I want to put in a raised bed, as the ground there is very clay and flinty, along a north facing fence but have absolutely no clue as to what to put there. I work full time so would like low maintenance and ideally plants no higher than 3 to 4’. Apart from that I’m open to any suggestions from you lovely people

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£26,200 on interest only part of mortgage (July 16)...will chip away £17,103
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  • Katiehound
    Katiehound Posts: 7,495
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    I have had pyracantha growing on a north facing fence. several different shades of orange berries.
     You can keep the bush clipped close to the fence and still get the benefit of creamy flowers & red/orange berries with shiny evergreen foliage.
    Buy Pyracantha Orange Charmer For Sale Online London UKPyracantha Saphyr Red Trellis 5L - Hedges Direct Hedging Plants

     I have also had garrya elliptica growing - but it got a bit too big- grey green evergreen foliage & dangly catkins in spring. can't cut & paste a picture- but they seem expensive!

    Another choice (for me) would be a euonymus.
    Shrub is shades of green/cream/ white (evergreen) and if planted against a fence will grow up it rather than as a bush
    has tiny white flowers & white berries when mature
    Euonymus fortunei Silver Queen 2 litre potEuonymus fortunei Emerald n Gold Spindle Evergreen Shrub Hedge  9cm Pot

    daffodils of any variety- you can buy fairly cheap bags of bulbs from supermarkets. If you don't have slugs/snails these should increase each year
    hyacinths- these shrink in size each year
    multi headed/ small tulips
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  • twopenny
    twopenny Posts: 5,290
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    I second euonymus.
    Try to get the spreading/climbing sort because that is tougher and makes a nice mound.
    Morrisons do box balls or cones that look interesting. I've got some.
    Perenial wallflowers bloom all year. Don't get Bowles Mauve because it goes straggley. The new varieties, pale mauve & pink do best and again, stay in a neat mound.
    The new small spreading roses do well with no attention. Can'[t remember what they are called but will post when it comes to me.

    Bulbs now going cheap in supermarkets and diy shops. I love the Dutch Iris in spring, they come after the crocus and dwarf Iris Reticulata. You can plant some of those and they will increase on their own.
    For summer/autumn the Allium bulbs will throw up some colour just when it's needed. Back of the border.

    And of course the dwarf daff that Morrisons sell for £2 a pot or less in spring can go in ready flowering and stay there for next year.

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  • wort
    wort Posts: 1,630
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    Evergreen climbing hydrangea. Mine is straight into the clay soil down that side .
    Focus on contribution instead of the impressiveness of consumption to see the true beauty in people.
  • Silvertabby
    Silvertabby Posts: 8,891
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    Helebores for ground cover.
  • fatbelly
    fatbelly Posts: 20,186
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    Ajuga Reptans (Bugle) for ground cover. We have lots of the purple variety, Burgundy Glow
  • wort
    wort Posts: 1,630
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    Also Acers like shade and have many beautiful colours.
    Focus on contribution instead of the impressiveness of consumption to see the true beauty in people.
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