The ingredient list for a beautiful garden seems simple: plants, soil, water, sun and love. When it comes down to doing it, the reality can be quite different. Perhaps one of the most challenging places to grow a garden is around a tree.
If you’ve had a tree in your yard, you’ve probably tried several if not all of the following:
- Adding Lawn Edging, Bricks or Stones to Frame the Garden
- Topping off with Healthy, Nutrient Rich Triple Mix
- Choosing Shade Loving Annuals
- Trying Drought Tolerant Perennials
Despite our best efforts, the plants seem to fail and weeds somehow sneak through the barrier. Why?
Competing Root System
Roots are hungry; they are constantly looking for minerals and water to stay alive and healthy. When you plant around a tree, both the plants and tree are competing for the same nutrients. It’s not impossible to have beautiful plants thrive under a tree, but it requires some additional effort. To have both your garden and tree thrive, gardeners need to commit to a rigorous maintenance schedule. This includes the regular addition of nutrient rich soil and fertilizer so that those hungry roots have everything that they need to thrive.
Weeds Sneak In
Why is it that we can’t get a petunia to bloom but those yellow dandelions seem to thrive? Weeds are fast growers; they are durable and naturally drought tolerant. Weeds are also natural survivors, and will seek out areas where plants are flailing and essentially take over. Strong, thriving plants will choke out weeds, but you need to keep the weeds out. To keep that beautiful garden blooming, you need to commit to regular weeding.
Choosing the right plants can make all of the difference. Before selecting your flowers, check your light conditions when your tree is in full bloom. The leaves and flowers on your tree, not only require additional nutrients from the ground, but mask out the sunlight. Any annuals that require sunlight will become straggly. For highly shaded areas, opt for shade loving plants with shallow root systems like lobelia, and impatiens.
Making the decision to plant under a tree requires regular maintenance. The Garden Halo can help minimize this commitment, by providing a weed free environment that plants will thrive in.
Read other blogs on this topic including:
Check out our plant ideas: