Planting Under Shallow Rooted Maple Tree - Knowledgebase Question

Beverly, MA
Avatar for ccrawford70
Question by ccrawford70
March 4, 1998
I live in northeast Massachusetts (zone 6). We have many very old Maple trees in the back yard. Very little grows under these trees. The roots are so shallow I'm wondering how perennials or ground cover will grow there.
How do I keep the maple tree roots from completely taking over any planting bed/area?

Answer from NGA
March 4, 1998
Those roots will unfortunately be a problem. Your clue is that nothing grows there now...probably not even grass! There are some ground covers that would probably be able to compete. Try pachysandra or periwinkle (vinca minor). Either will take awhile to establish themselves, but should do alright. Be very careful doing any planting. Maple roots are very shallow and can be damaged by digging.

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