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Alpine plants are ideal for a patio or balcony where space is limited. Although they are grouped together, the size of the plants varies, so make sure they are evenly matched, or one may swamp the rest. They need good drainage, so put a deep layer of gravel in the base of a wide, shallow container. Mix more gravel with John Innes no1 (about 1 part gravel : 4 compost) and fill the container. Make sure you like the arrangement, then plant the alpines high, with the old compost level only just below the new surface. Add stone(s) for interest, then mulch with a layer of gravel to avoid rotting.
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