In this article, we will be discussing what plant can go beside walls and fence in containers in the sun. When you look out in the garden, you often see boring walls and fences, which you can grow climbers on but then you wonder what plants can be grown near them and flourish.
The plants growing in this location will soften the appearance of these hard surfaces by spacing flowers and foliage nearby.
The plants that grow must be considered so that they can grow in harsher condition than normally found in gardens. The fences and walls provide a rain shadow, where plants near them do not receive an adequate supply of rainwater.
They will constantly remain on the drier side, so it is important to take this into consideration, especially if it has not rained for a while.
The drought-tolerant plants will do well under these circumstances are those that do well growing in sandy soils. This is why drought-resistant plants are imported as they need to balance the lack of rainfall they get and the increased watering need that plants in containers need.
You have a distinct advantage as you can tailor the plant to the growing conditions it prefers. What must be noted is that in containers plants tend to dry out quicker and that is why it is important to water frequently, almost daily in a hot summer.
One advantage is that south-facing walls and fences make an ideal location for rearing tender plants, as this provides the heat and shelter they require to survive all year round in cooler climates.
The following plants will do well near walls and fences in a container in full sun.
AGASTACHE FOENICULUM (Aniseed Hyssop)
This 1.2m tall perennial has an upright habit with its mid-green, lance-shaped leaves that smell of liquorice. In late summer, tall spikes of fluffy, blue flowers appear that provide a haven to bees and butterflies. Grow it in a well-drained, multipurpose compost in a container.
ANEMONE X HYBRIDA (Japanese Anemone)
This 1.2m tall upright perennial has divided, green leaves and from late summer to early autumn, white and pink blooms appear to give a late-season colour. Grow this perennial in a large container full of well-drained, multipurpose compost.
ANTENNARIA DIOICA (Mountain Everlasting) ‘Rubra’
This short, 15cm tall, semi-evergreen mat-forming, spreading perennial has tiny, oval, woolly leaves, In late spring to early summer, clusters of fluffy, rose-pink flower heads appear, Ideal planted at the back near walls in a container full of well-drained, multipurpose compost.
ARTEMISIA LUDOVICIANA (Western Mugwort)
This 1.2m, tall, bushy perennial that had aromatic lance-shaped, toothed-edge, silvery-grey, woolly leaves. In summer, slender plumes of tiny, brown-yellow flowers appear. The variety ‘Silver Queen’ has silver leaves instead. Grow this attractive plant in a container full of well-drained, multipurpose compost.
BOLTONIA ASTEROIDES (False Aster)
This is a tall, 2m high, branching perennial that has linear, grey-green leaves. In summer, sprays of tiny, white, daisy-like blooms appear. The plant had a habit of the stems collapsing, to avoid this reduce stems by a 1/3 in spring. Grow it in a container full of moisture-retentive, multipurpose compost.
CALACHORTUS VENUSTES (Fairy Lantern)
This flowering bulb has grey-green, grass-like foliage and in early summer white, yellow, purple, or red cup-shaped flowers appear. Each petal tends to have a yellow-margined, dark red blotch on them. Grow it in a well-drained, multipurpose compost in a container against a sunny wall.
CAMPANULA LATIFOLIA (Giant Bellflowers)
This is 1.2m tall, upright perennial with oval, toothed-edged, mid-green leaves and throughout summer, long clusters of tubular, violet-purple flowers appear. You must deadhead regularly to keep the plant in bloom. Grow this plant in a container full of well-drained, multipurpose compost.
CARPENTERIA CALIFORNICA (Tree Anemone)
This 2m tall, evergreen, bushy shrub has glossy, dark green, slim leaves and from early to midsummer, fragrant, yellow-centred, white flowers are produced, Will look its best when planted near walls in a large container full of well-drained, multipurpose compost.
CEANOTHUS ‘Dark Star’
This is a 2m tall, spreading, evergreen shrub that has attractive small, oval, dark-green leaves. In late spring, round clusters of deep blue flowers appear above arching stems. Best grown the stems trained against a sunny wall in a large container full of well-drained, multipurpose compost.
CHAENOMELES x SUPERBA (Japanese Quince)
This 1m tall, deciduous, shrub that is spiky produces a mass of red, pink, orange and white cup-shaped flowers that appear in spring. The flowers appear first and then the leaves. After flowering, edible, yellow fruits are produced. Grow it in a container full of well-drained, multipurpose compost.
COREOPSIS GRANDIFLORA (Tickweed)
This 45c tall, compact perennial that is often grown as an annual has serrated, green leaves and throughout summer a mass of bright, yellow, single or double flower heads appear. Grow it in well-drained, multipurpose compost in a container,
EUPHORBIA CHARACIAS Subsp. WULFENII (Mediterranean Spurge)
This 1.2m tall evergreen, upright subshrub has tall stems covered with slender, grey-green leaves. The leaves appear in the first year of growth. The following spring, vivid yellow-green flowering spikes appear. Grow this attractive plant in a large container full of a well-drained, multipurpose compost.
GAILLARDIA x GRANDIFLORA
This 90cm tall, bushy perennial has shiny, green leaves and in midsummer to early autumn, masses of large, red and yellow-tip flowers appear. Grow it in a container full of well-drained, multipurpose compost.
GAURA LINDHEIMERI (Wand Flower)
This 1.5m tall. Upright, clump-forming perennial has lance-shaped, green leaves. In midsummer to early autumn, tall slim stems appear that have plenty of star-shaped, white flowers. Grow it in a large container full of a well-drained, multipurpose compost.
GERANIUM MACRORRHIZUM (Cranesbill)
A small, 38cm tall, semi-evergreen, perennial that had rounded, aromatic, deeply-lobed, green leaves. In early summer a profusion of small, magenta flowers is produced. To help keep the plant neat and tidy, cut back foliage in midsummer. Grow it in a container, full of well-drained, multipurpose compost.
HELIANTHUS ‘Lemon Queen’
This is a large, 1.5m tall, vigorous, upright perennial that has branching stems of oval, dark green leaves. An abundance of large, daisy-like pale yellow flowers with dark yellow eyes appears from late summer to early autumn. Grow it in a large container full of well-drained, multipurpose compost.
HIBISCUS SYRIACUS (Rose Mallow)
This 3m tall, deciduous, upright shrub has dark green, lobed leaves and from late summer to early autumn, masses of single blue, violet or white flowers appear. Grow this large shrub in a very large container full of multipurpose compost.
IRIS (Bearded Iris) ‘Edith Wolford’
This 90cm, upright semi-evergreen perennial has grey-green, sword-shaped leaves. In late spring, yellow, blue and violet flowers appear.
A great alternative is I. pallida ‘Argentea Variegata’ (Domination Iris), which is a 1.2m tall, semi-evergreen perennial that has grey-green and white-striped leaves. In early summer blue-purple flowers appear, Grow irises in a container full of well-drained, multipurpose compost where the rhizomes should be just below the surface.
JUNIPERUS SCOPULORUM (Rocky Mountain Juniper)
This will make a beautiful specimen plant with a narrow, columnar nature. This conifer can grow up to 6m in height and tends to have bright blue steely, scale-like leaves. A plant that is tolerant if hot, dry-sites in front of walls. Grow it in a very large container full of well-drained, multipurpose compost.
LUPINUS ARBOREUS (Tree Lupin)
A 2m tall, fast-growing, semi-evergreen, sprawling shrub that in early summer, short spikes of fragrant, yellow flowers appear above hairy, feathery, green leaves. Grow it in a well-drained, multipurpose compost in a container. It can be a short-lived plant, so do be prepared to expect losses.
NECTAROSCORDUM SICULUM (Honey Garlic)
This is a 1.2m tall, upright bulb that produces green, narrow garlic-scented leaves, these leaves tend to fade when the pendent, bell-shaped cream and purple flowers appear in late spring to early summer. It is known for it ‘Shuttlecock’ shaped seed heads that appear after the flowers. Grow them in groups in a container full of well-drained, multipurpose compost.
NEPETA (Catmint) ‘Sixhills Giant’
This 1.2m tall, vigorous, clump-forming, perennial has narrow oval, toothed and aromatic, grey-green leaves. Lavender blue or white flowers appear on top of spikes that appear in summer. Cut back in late summer to keep it neat and tidy. Grow it in a large container full of well-drained, multipurpose compost.
RIBES SPECIOSUM (Fuchsia-Flowered Gooseberry)
This 2m tall, deciduous bushy shrub that has spiny stems of glossy, lobed, green leaves. In mid-spring, pendent, tabular, fuchsia-like, red flowers appear. The flowers are followed by red fruits. Not totally frost hardy but will its best planted against a sunny wall, especially the cold climates. Grow this gooseberry in a large container full of well-drained, multipurpose compost.
RUMEX SANGUINEUS (Bloody Dock)
This 90cm tall, clump-forming perennial is often grown for its decorative green, oval leaves with distinctive red veins. It is edible whilst young. In summer, spikes of small, cream flowers appear. New leaves can be encouraged by clipping back after flowering. Grow it in a container full of well-drained, multipurpose compost.
SALVIA ROSMARINUS (Rosemary)
This 1.5m tall, evergreen shrub has highly aromatic, needle-like, green leaves and in spring, small blue flowers appear amongst the stems. For a container, ‘Miss Jessop’s Upright’ is recommended for growing. Grow this herb in a large container full of well-drained, multipurpose compost.
An alternative is S. rosmarinus ‘Prostratus Group’, which has a prostrating habit. Ideal as an edging plant need walls and fences.
SOPHORA (Sun King)
This bushy, 3m tall, evergreen tree produces long stems covered with small, oval leaflets. From late winter to early spring, golden –yellow, bell-shaped flowers appear in large clusters, it thrives in a sheltered spot of a south-facing wall in a large container full of well-drained, multipurpose compost.
STACHYS BYZANTINA (Lamb’s Ears)
This 38cm tall, evergreen, matt-forming perennial has beautiful, silvery-grey leaves, where in summer spikes of tiny, mauve-pink flowers appear. This drought-tolerant perennial makes an excellent ground cover plant in south-facing walls. Grow it in a container full of well-drained, multipurpose compost.
TIGRIDIA PAVONIA (Tiger Flower)
A 45cm tall, tender bulb that has sword-shaped, pleated, green leaves and in summer, three petals flowers in red, pink, orange, yellow and white appear with vivid, contrasting markings.
The blooms do not last long but it can be grown in a south-facing wall, where it will be sheltered from harsh frosts.
Grow it in groups in a container full of well-drained, multipurpose compost.
WEIGELA FLORIDA ‘Variegata’
This deciduous, bushy, shrub has oval, cream-edged green leaves and from late spring to early summer a profusion of pink, funnel-shaped flowers appear. An easy plant to look after and it can tolerate dryness close to walls or fences. Grow it in a large container full of well-drained, multipurpose compost.
In this article, we have discussed what plants can be grown near walls and fences in containers in full sun. This is a difficult area as windy and tends not to get much water. In containers, you can tailor the plants to the compost you wish to use but then you will have to water much more. You cannot rely on the rain to make up for any shortfalls.
As you can see that several plants can do well under these harsh conditions, bringing plants of coloured leaves and blooms, scent and different forms, so you do have a choice.
If you have any comments or questions that you like to raise, please do so in the comment section below.
Keep smiling and keep gardening.