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planting around a tree

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Question from barry wilton

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i am creating a white garden around a silver birch and quite near to the tree is difficult to plant as there is the root problem so this leaves me with a bare area.Is there anything which would need a smallish planting hole and spread once established

  • Views: 1641
  • Replies: 2
  • Posted: Tue. 12th May 2009 16:39

planting around a tree

Reply from eric jolley

Hi Barry,
silver birch have lots of surface roots so you will always have a problem,I grow brugmansias in very large pots so round the base of the plant it looks rather bare and there is of course the surface root problem if you want to underplant,my solution to this was to grow plants in 5"pots and place them on the bare surface,I have surounded them with fuchsias the bushiness hides the pots,maybe you could try this. eric

  • Posted: Tue. 19th May 2009 12:46

Birch underplanting

Reply from Mark Pumphrey

You are right in realising birch has a very dense root system that does make planting difficult. There a many plants that will tolerate the situation and will spread to cover the ground. My choice for such a situation would be Pachysandra terminalis which will spread and cover the area in question. I have also used Epimedium which are equally happy in such a situation. If you wish you could try Lamiums and Vinca minor which can work well. Make sure you water the plants well as they will require some assistance to establish themselves competing with the Birch for moisture and nutrients. I once tried using variegated ground elder which was most effective until it reverted back to the plain green form - a most undesired plant however it did cover the ground very effectively!!!

Mark Pumphrey MSGD
http://www.broadviewgardendesign.co.uk
http://www.sgd.org.uk

  • Posted: Thu. 4th June 2009 18:32