Many of us have a narrow strip of land, about 1 m wide or less, along the side of the house that we don't quite know how to deal with. A simple solution is to allow Agapanthus or another equally undemanding plant species to fill up the available space. This could quite look quite classy, in particular when the plants are maintained to a high standard. But there are ways to achieve classic simplicity with an extra dimension by combining what seems to be the most logical thing to do with narrow spaces, namely planting exclusively in lines, with planting rounded shrubs in pairs or small groups.
Slopes in gardens can be challenging for both gardener and plants. The rooting environment of vegetation at the top of a slope is different from that of plants at the bottom. The steeper the slope, the less time water has to infiltrate the soil and the faster water runs off so that plants at the top have to be able to cope with much drier conditions. Unless the soil is held together effectively by root systems, water is not the only thing that runs down the bank.
It can take quite a while before a bank is stabilised by careful and considered planting. A quicker, and, depending on the gradient of the slope, easier way to deal with a bank is to retain the soil within walls of rocks, concrete, bricks, or timber. Rather than one massive reinforced retaining wall, terracing offers a gentler alternative. Terraces created by a series of low retaining walls allow rainwater to soak into the soil instead of running down to the bottom of the slope, and they are also more user-friendly for the gardener.