You don't need a lot of space to create an aesthetically pleasing rock garden, and they don't have to be built on a slope. If you have a spare corner in your garden, you can create a beautiful raised rock garden with stones that complement the natural landscape and plants that add a burst of colour to your outdoor space. Even a small space of only a couple of metres can be suitable for conversion to a rockery, and you may be surprised by how easy it is to build a rock garden when you understand a few basic principles. Here's what you need to know about creating raised rock gardens.
Prepare The Raised Bed
Raised beds are often bordered with wood panels, but creating your raised bed with a stone border will give the rockery a more seamless, natural appearance. Use large boulders to make the border and either leave them loose or use premixed cement to fill in the gaps and create a solid frame as your starting point. Next, fill your raised bed with sandy soil, which has good drainage properties and is the ideal growing medium for rockery plants. Building a rockery on heavy soil, such as clay, can quickly kill plants due to waterlogging. Sandy soil is also rich in nutrients, so it's ideal for getting plants established.
Layer Stones By Size
You'll need a good mix of different-sized rocks to create your raised rock garden. Limestone, red sandstone, granite and slate are just a few examples of rocks that are suitable for rock gardens. Choose rocks that you like and that fit in with any existing features in your garden. Layer stones on top of your soil base, starting with the larger stones at the bottom. Create a few circles with the larger stones and add smaller stones on top to create pockets that you will use for planting. Once you're happy with the arrangement of the rocks, fill the pockets with the same sandy soil you used for the base layer.
Choose Suitable Plants
Hardy, drought-resistant plants are ideal for use in rock gardens, as sandy soil allows water to seep through to the underlying soil base, which can cause the soil in your rockery to dry out during periods of hot weather. When choosing your plants, ensure you have a selection that reaches different heights and spreads to enhance the aesthetic of the rockery. A few examples of suitable plants include Scotch moss, candytuft, crocuses and antirrhinum.
Your local landscaping supplier has all the materials required for you to create a beautiful rock garden. If you're unsure about the type of rocks you want or how much soil you'll need, they can make recommendations and help you with planning and ordering suitable materials.
To learn more, contact a resource that carries landscaping products.