The Q&A Archives: Trying To Start New Garden In New Home

Question: I have a lot of shade from tall pine trees and my soil is very rocky underneath the only thing that is planted here is are hostas and one lilac bush. I need color with plants that do not need a lot of water. Can you help?

Answer: Unfortunately, it is often very difficult to establish plantings beneath large pines. Their roots are very greedy and the soil beneath them tends to be nutrient poor as well as dry. The shade creates an additional limitation on what can be grown there. Hostas and lilacs are noted for their toughness and ability to survive. You might consider using large planters such as half barrels filled with bright annuals such as fibrous rooted begonias or coleus for instance to provide the all season color you want.

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