Tiny wildflowers, mountain hemlock, and granite outcrops introduce you to a special alpine world resembling the mosaic of plant life and landforms found high in the mountains. True alpine plants live in high mountainous regions above the tree-line in harsh conditions. Although we do not live in these extreme places we are able to grow alpine plants if we create certain conditions for them in our gardens.
Except for the woodland understory these plants love light, and adapt to a wide range of light conditions.
• If you have a rocky and porous soil, choose plants that hold onto water. Plants with fleshy leaves or bulbous roots are good choices.
• If you have a rich organic soil, choose plants from alpine woodland and alpine meadow ecosystems.
• Refrain from adding soil amendments— except seasonal mulching—too rich a soil will cause these plants to overgrow your rock garden.
• After approximately one year, these plants require little additional watering. Too much water will make these plants grow too large for the scale of a rock garden, or worse, kill them.
Once established, rock gardens need less attention than almost any other type of garden. The plants are well adapted to our climate. Weeding, occasional watering and annual mulching are the only maintenance requirements.