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  • Writer's pictureFletchCath

Sustainable gardening - low maintenance and water saving!

I have noticed over the last few years that the slope of the driveway/front garden leads to a lot of water run off away from the border, and down onto the road. In heavy rain showers this undoubtedly adds to the surface flooding that can occur further down the road, and also means that the border is losing soil and nutrients onto the drive.

Without being in a position to completely overhaul the space (as much I would not miss the block paving!) I wracked my brains to come up with a solution that wouldn't break the bank, or involve significant disruption to the drive. The answer? Guttering and gravel:

Digging a trench between the border and drive to insert the guttering

Filling the channel with pebbles

And finished up with natural stone edging, higher at the bottom of the border where the soil is more prone to leaching.

I started out by measuring up and calculating the amount of guttering and pebbles required. The larger stones were reused from the existing edging.

By drilling small holes in the border size of the guttering, the water which is caught in the channel will seep back into the border rather than out across the drive.


On the other side of the front garden is a very narrow border which was planted up mainly with wildflowers, which looked lovely but was fairly impractical and maintenance heavy with plants regularly needing cutting back from the path.

The plan here was to create a lower maintenance, less intrusive border which included hardy plants that would also require little watering in dry weather (allowing watering efforts to be focused elsewhere and so saving time!).

Digging out the existing planting (some rescued and reused elsewhere)

Positioning new planting - Sempervivum, Hylotelephium and Sedum primarily

Planted up and mulched with decorative black pebbles

Next project - back garden!

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