5 Gardening Tips for Planting Under Trees

Discover the best way to plant under trees!

Discover the best way to plant under trees!

Trees add beauty, shade, and dimension to every landscape. They also add a unique obstacle for gardeners who want to plant other types of plants under the tree. As the branches block the light and warmth of the sun, it can be difficult for gardeners to sustain the life of their other plants. Follow this guide to planting under trees; it will help you maintain the lush beauty and color you want to add to your landscape.

Trees are Sensitive

When planting near or under the shade of a tree be careful not to damage the tree in the process. Any damage to the roots or bark could lead to damage that could affect the tree’s growth and health. Instead of a large hovel, use a trowel or digging knife to delicately work around the roots.

Start Small

Small plants are the best option for planting under trees. You’re able to plant many small “liner” plants that don’t require deep digging. Essentially, you want seedlings that have small root balls that you can squeeze in without wide or deep digging.

A Few Varieties

Keep your variety of plants small but compensate by using a lot of them. Native plants are a great choice as they’ll adapt the best to the climate of the region in which you live. Consider using groundcovers and plants including Columbine and bleeding heart.

Engulf the Tree

Engulfing the tree is a better option for creating a natural look rather than planting a ring around it. You can even consider planting up against the trunk of the tree and then flow more naturally around the tree. This technique does have the opportunity to overtake your entire yard, so some thinning will be necessary to maintain a neat look. Sprawlers like foamflower or Laurentia are the best options for creating this type of effect.


Because of the shade of the tree, it’s unlikely that you’ll get much flowering. To get the most color from your planting, use plants that have full, vibrant leaves throughout the season. You’d be surprised how much life and vivid color you can achieve just from the leaves of plants. A couple of great options are Wild Ginger and Lady Fern.


Whether you’re looking to restore a local wetland or beautify your property, American Native Plants can provide you with the right plants for the job. With an inventory of over 400,000 native trees, native shrubs, and herbaceous plants consider American Native Plants your one-stop shop for wholesale native plant needs. Peruse our catalog, give us a call, and follow us on FacebookTwitter, and Google+!

This entry was posted on Friday, June 22nd, 2018 at 11:18 am. Both comments and pings are currently closed.

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