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Why plant a Mediterranean Garden?
There is just so much to love about a Mediterranean Garden.
The beautiful smell of lemon, lavender and rosemary in the air. The sound of water fountains running and the crunch of gravel underneath feet.
Can you picture it in your mind?
This type of planting is especially perfect in a courtyard area.
This article will look at the :
- Definition and History of a Mediterranean garden.
- What types of plants (fragrant, drought-tolerant and edible)
- Typical Mediterranean Landscaping and Accessories
And to make it really simple to create yourself at home, you can buy everything at Amazon!
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Mediterranean Landscape Definition
This type of planting is very beneficial if you live, like I do, in a dry, arid region where xeriscaping (a style of landscape design requiring little or no irrigation or other maintenance, used in arid regions) is actually quite necessary.
I live in Texas although this planting is great if you are in an area with dry summers and wet winters.
The basics of a Mediterranean garden are fragrant and drought-tolerant plants. Mediterranean planting also includes edible plants.
Mediterranean Garden History
Theophrastus was the successor to Aristotle in the Peripatetic school and is considered the father of Botany for his work on plants.
Theophrastus detected the process of germination and realized the importance of climate and soil to plants.
He had his own botanical garden and wrote books about the benefits of plants and their uses! So interesting!
Fragrant, Drought-Tolerant and Edible Mediterranean Plants
These are my favorite types of plants to create a Mediterranean garden.
They are also the easiest to plant and to thrive.
Gardening can be difficult at the best of times but when you throw in really hot weather you want plants that are going to be quite hardy.
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White Drift Tea Roses (Fragrant)
White Drift Tea Roses are a new and improved variety of Rose. Created from a blend of miniature roses and full-size ground cover roses.
White Drift Tea Roses bloom from spring all the way to frost and maintain a natural shape and compact size
This disease-resistant plant is easy to care for and easy to combine with other perennials. Drift roses are a cross between full-size groundcover roses and miniatures.
Rosemary is an essential in any garden due to the beautiful scent it emits, the benefit to cooking and how hardy it is!
Snip fresh rosemary stems throughout the growing season. To use rosemary, strip needles from stems and chop before adding to dishes. To store fresh rosemary up to one week in the refrigerator, place stems in a plastic bag with a damp paper towel.
To preserve, air-dry stems by bundling and hanging upside down in a dark place with good air circulation. Remove leaves from stems and store in airtight containers. Dried, whole rosemary retains flavor up to one year. You can also freeze whole stems in a plastic bag. To use, stripe as many leaves as you need from frozen stems. Chop rosemary well before using.
Pulverize dry leaves before adding to dishes, herb blends, or sauces to release aromatic oils and to make them easier to chew. Rosemary texture and flavor varies throughout the season. Leaves are tender in spring, with fewer aromatic oils. By late summer, foliage packs a more potent flavor. Toss late summer stems onto grilling coals to infuse meat with delicious flavor.
Harvest rosemary flowers for a delicious addition to lettuce or fruit salads, pasta, or rice creations.
Blue Fescue Grass (Drought-Tolerant)
- Position: full sun
- Soil: well-drained soil
- Rate of growth: average
- Flowering period: June to July
- Hardiness: fully hardy
- A compact, blue leaves ornamental grass, with needle-like, silvery blue-green leaves and short spikes of blue-green midsummer flowers, gradually fading to buff. Neat and rounded in shape, it looks great in a gravel garden, combined with the spires of blue and purple-flowering perennials, or with Mediterranean-style plants. To achieve the best foliage colour, these plants need lots of sun.
- Garden care: Comb through the plant with your fingers in winter to remove dead foliage. Container-grown specimens should be watered well when they are establishing. Plants need replacing every few years as they become tatty-looking.
Here are some great tips for growing lavender
- Give the plants 6 hours or more of full sun each day.
- Apply very little water. Most people overwater.
- Grow in well-drained areas or raised beds. If you have heavy or clay soil, grow lavender in pots.
- If your soil is sandy, mix in some gravel to improve drainage.
- Make sure you have good airflow around the plants if you have high humidity.
- Don’t mulch or use any topping that will bring moisture to the plants. “It is best to use small pea gravel on top of the soil.”
- Don’t use a sprinkler system.
- Plant lavender with other drought-tolerant plants.
- Don’t fertilize; it’s not necessary.
- Prune back the plants in the late fall.
Lemon Trees (Fragrant + Edible Fruit)
Lemons are more cold-sensitive than all other citrus trees. Due to this cold sensitivity, lemon trees should be planted near the south side of the home. Lemon trees need protection from frost. Growing them near the house should help with this. Lemon trees also require full sunlight for adequate growth. While lemon trees can tolerate a range of soils, including poor soil, most prefer well-drained, slightly acidic soil. Lemon trees should be set slightly higher than ground. Therefore, dig a hole somewhat shallower than the length of the root ball. Place the tree in the hole and replace soil, tamping firmly as you go. Water sufficiently and add some mulch to help retain moisture. Lemon trees require deep watering once weekly. If necessary, pruning may be done to maintain their shape and height.
Mediterranean Landscaping: Gravel, Pots and Water Features (Fountains)
Every Mediterranean garden will have at least one of these elements; Gravel, Pots and Water Feature
- Versatile: can be used for paths, patios, driveways, or as a base for paving stones
- Easy to install
- Serves as rodent barrier if used around base of house
- Prevents weeds
- Prevents erosion
- Improves drainage
- Easily maintained by raking stones into place
- Travels: needs to be contained with edging material
- Difficult to remove from the soil if you decide to change the landscape
- Shifts underfoot; base rock must be added underneath to prevent this
- Can be uncomfortable on bare feet (compared to flagstones or concrete)
- Does not provide a solid base for dining furniture
- Needs to be replenished every four years or so
- Difficult for snow removal
Water features are essential to any Mediterranean planting scheme.
There is nothing more beautiful than smelling lemons, lavender and rosemary in the air and hearing the soft, lull of water flowing.
Since this article is all about planting a Mediterranean Garden with Amazon, I’ve rounded up the highest-rated fountains on Amazon that are classically elegant:
Pots are a key feature of Mediterranean Gardens.
Here are some lovely classically elegant ones that would look perfect in your landscaping:
Final thoughts on planting a Mediterranean Garden
If you want a low maintenance garden full of drought-resistant and fragrant plants and you have hot summers and wet winters, then this type of planting will work for you.
I love this combination of white roses, lavender and gravel, so pretty.
These raised beds are gloriously stuffed full of lavenders and grasses.
This gravel path is just the dream. I love the beautiful feature pot at the top which helps focus the eye bursting with lavender.
Aren’t Mediterranean Gardens so beautiful! I feel like I can almost smell the lavender, rosemary, and lemons in the air, sigh……….
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