raised beds layered top of river rock south side - Knowledgebase Question

burlington, Co
Avatar for rhondakvedar
Question by rhondakvedar
March 24, 2010
I have 2 raised beds using railroad ties. The top layer is covered in river rock. I orig. had cedar arborvitae type but most died & remaining look bad. Very hot/sunny south side, hard to water as sides can blow out. Single mom w/no help but would like to beautify relatively cheaply. I have 3 remaining arborvitae. 1 looks good, 2 small/thin. Soil poor. Need something drought tolerant.

Answer from NGA
March 24, 2010
Some drought tolerant shrubs suitable for your growing region include: Amelanchier alnifolia (serviceberry), with upright to spreading branches, small rounded leaves; clusters of small white flowers; blue-black fruit attractive to wildlife; orange to red fall color; Rhamnus smithii ( Smith buckthorn), has upright habit with dark green shiny leaves; black fruit in late summer on female plants; yellow fall color; good screen plant; Amorpha fruticosa (false indigo), an open, wide-spreading shrub; feathery green foliage; spikes of deep blue flowers in summer; yellow fall color; Cowania mexicana (cliffrose), an upright oval shrub; rigid, gnarled branches; small, lobed olive-green leaves; fragrant creamy-colored flowers followed by feather-tailed seeds; Ceratoides lanata (winterfat), dense erect shrub covered with white woolly fruits; grayish-green leaves persist in winter; excellent forage for wildlife.

Hope these suggestions are helpful.

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