The Q&A Archives: sun blocked yard

Question: I have two big trees in the front of my house that block the sun, so under those trees I have a large area where there is no grass growing. What is the best shade grass and when is the best time to seed the area

Answer: Growing a lush, green lawn under large trees is a difficult proposition. First, the dense shade makes grass struggle to live, the canopy of leaves generally keeps rainfall directly below the tree to a minimum, and finally, the grass roots will have to compete with the larger, more established tree roots for moisture and nutrients. When you visit parks, arboretums and golf courses and see thick turfgrass growing under trees, you'll know it's possible to achieve, but keep in mind that the effect is high in maintenance and very carefully planned before the trees or turf are installed. Most homeowners don't have the time or resources to duplicate it. With that said, Creeping Red and other Fine Fescues are the best choices for shady areas. For extreme shade areas you might want to consider a blend of Creeping, Hard and Chewings such as is included in the Mid America Super Shade / Bluegrass Mixture. These three grasses tend to compliment each other in various shade situations and soil profiles.

To be honest, I'd suggest planting a groundcover under the trees rather than trying to get grass to grow there. The tree roots will continue to push up over the years and a groundcover such as Ajuga (Carpet Bugle), Vinca (Periwinkle), or Ivy will grow high enough to camoflage the roots. Hope this information helps!

« Click to go to the homepage

» Ask a question of your own

Q&A Library Searching Tips

  • When singular and plural spellings differ, as in peony and peonies, try both.
  • Search terms are not case sensitive.

Today's site banner is by plantmanager and is called "Captivating Caladiums"