The Q&A Archives: what will grow under pine trees?

Question: i can't get anything to grow under or around my huge pind tree, HELP!

Answer: Getting anything to grow under pines is difficult for several reasons. The shade under a pine is quite dense, and the canopy of the pine keeps natural rainfall from reaching the soil. Needles that are shed make a thick mulch that acidifies the soil, and pine roots are shallow so they take up most of the moisture -- lawns, groundcovers, shrubs and perennials just can't compete. Instead of struggling to get anything to grow under the tree, you might consider placing a bench there so you can enjoy the tree's shade, perhaps surrounded by self-watering pots or planters of shade-loving plants (such as impatiens, caladium, coleus).

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