Lawns Under Pines - Knowledgebase Question

Thousand Oaks, CA
Avatar for Vett57
Question by Vett57
January 21, 1998
We have a huge pine tree in the front yard and the grass just doesn't seem to grow very well under it. What can we do to encourage the grass to grow?

Answer from NGA
January 21, 1998
Growing lawns 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 and groundcovers just can't compete.

Instead of struggling to get grass 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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