|Thursday Tips & Techniques: Seashore Gardens|
|Written by Heleigh Bostwick Thursday, 19 January 2012|
Itís a fact that gardening at the seashore is a bit different than gardening inland, but itís really just a matter of finding the right plants. Seashore gardeners, in almost every circumstance have three factors to contend with that inland gardeners usually donít have: Sand, salt, and wind.
Gardening at the seashore doesnít mean you canít have a garden filled with colorful flowers, fruit laden shrubs, hedges, or evergreen trees. It just means that you have to plant the right ones so that they thrive under the climatic conditions that are specific to the seaside. Even if you donít live right on the beach, you still need to account for salt in the air, constant breezes, and sandy soils. Depending on your location, you might even have to deal with mucky marsh soils or clay hardpan instead of the sandy or silty soils typically associated with the beach.
Native plants should be your first choice for plant materials (of course!) because they are adapted to the existing conditions. Dune grasses, seaside goldenrod, verbena, beach plums, winterberry holly, bayberry, cedars (Juniperus spp.), pines, and prickly pear cactus, which grows as far north as Massachusetts, are just a few of the plants that work well in sandy beach soils. And, donít forget about containers. Lantanas for example, are native to Florida and can be grown as annuals in more northern climates.
Seascape Gardening: From New England to the Carolinas
Taylor's Guide to Seashore Gardening: From the Atlantic to the Pacific, the Best Plants to Grow on Every Coast
Gardens by the Sea