Coastal planting: natural drifts and salt tolerant plants

If you are lucky enough to have a sea view or garden where there is a lot of salt spray, there are still many opportunities for creating windbreaks, hedges, havens....If you click on the coastal planting category you will see  examples of more dramatic rocky outcrops in Southern Tuscany, where I am from...On a recent trip to the UK south coast, facing the Isle of Wight, we saw fabulous examples of naturalization of salt tolerant plants and succulents, - incredibly -flourishing on a windswept and generally very exposed site. I think this rugosa rose amongst Phragmites australis reeds is really poetic, and shows how this tough plant withstands high levels of salt in air and the swampy ground...

esterni design garden blog

Succulents need very free draining slopes such as these to cope with cold wet winters: below a lovely example of texture, where the large green angled leaves form a carpet, mixing with grey saltbush and wild grasses.

esterni design garden blog- atriplex species

"armeria maritima" " grasses and atriplex species"

Armria maritima, or sea thrift, is a remarkably adaptable plant, which in some european cities such as Paris and Berlin has recently been used to help with green mats and high tolerance planting schemes in urban greening projects. It survives in poor soils and being rolled over by trams!

Natural Coastal Planting in Italy

While the weather becomes decidedly colder and wintery, we at Esterni Design Partnership console ourselves with images of sunnier climates. According to the BBC Weather office, 2010 has been the second hottest year on record, following 1998. These statistics often don't register in our normal day to day life, though research, development and study of climate change, climate mitigation through planting and resource management and use of local natural materials with a low footprint  is central to the way Esterni Design Partnership approaches all our exterior design projects.

While we reflect on this, and the possibility of lots of snow in the Hampshire region in the next days and weeks, we  are sharing some images of natural wild planting, in late summer, at Talamone, on the coast of southern Tuscany, Italy.

We also find, scouring the internet, that it was one of the locations for the Bond movie, Quantum of Solace! Rugged, beautiful, sunny, planted coast. Perfect!

Till next time...