The Q&A Archives: Ground Covers Under Pine Trees

Question: What is the best ground cover to plant under pine trees, and how do I prepare the soil.


If you're preparing a new bed, just put a 4-6 inch layer of composted material over the top and rototil it in. If you're planting around established pine trees, you shouldn't add or remove any measurable amount of soil or you'll disturb the feeder roots which are just under the soil surface. You can safely dig small holes and plant groundcover plants, but you shouldn't go much beyond that as far as soil preparation goes. It's best to find a groundcover like Ivy or Vinca minor that doesn't mind the extra acidity that pine needles furnish when they're decomposing. Usually the shade is fairly dense under pines, too, so choose a groundcover that does well in the shade. Besides ivy and Vinca, consider Lamium, Sweet Woodruff, and v.

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