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Rock garden general questions

Charlevoix, MI(Zone 4b)

Hello all! I have a shady area in my yard where the soil is poor at best. Filled with stones, broken glass and pottery, tree roots, what have you. The ground is undulating, with the depression being about 2 feet deep at it's deepest.

I would love to have a rock garden in that area, but I really have to confess, I don' t know the first thing about them. What are some general requirements? Sun/shade? Water requirements? Soil? It looks like such a wasteland

All this brush is gone now:
http://picasaweb.google.com/michelle.katt/ProblemAreas/photo#5024811420523109698

Another view:
http://picasaweb.google.com/michelle.katt/ProblemAreas/photo#5024812421250489762

This message was edited Apr 11, 2007 8:18 AM

Rosemont, ON(Zone 4a)

With shade, rocks, and tree roots, I think your best bet would be woodland plants. Heuchera (Coral Bells) and ferns, for example. Maybe Epimedium. Alchemilla (Lady's Mantle). Violas. Hardy Cyclamen, if you have reliable snow cover. Iris tectorum (Japanese Roof Iris). Pulmonaria (Lungwort).
Polygonatum (Solomon's Seal). Trillium. That's all I can think of on the spur of the moment, but there's lots more that would be hardy in your Zone.

Charlevoix, MI(Zone 4b)

Great idea, June. I already have some trillium I could put there. Might be able to get my hands on some ferns!

Thanks for your response!

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