Eco Friendly/Green Landscaping Part II - Knowledgebase Question

Pottstown, Pe
Question by cbeiderman
October 29, 2009
(end of first email w/ this title) organic & non-organic pest control. I have 3 mountain laurel bushes that have not done well. They get a bit of filtered sun, but maybe their roots get too wet? We have mulch on top of the bed and when it rains, psbly the soil stays too wet because of the shade?(We bought excellent soil to form the planting beds, so soil isn't full of shale like the lawn.) I

Answer from NGA
October 29, 2009


Could be that the soil stays to wet. Mountain Laurel needs a moist, acidic soil, but it also needs good drainage. Partial shade is fine, or full sun in a sheltered area, where it won't get the worst of the winter winds. Amend the soil with organic matter, and give it at least a 2 inch layer of mulch (wood chips, pine needles, or leaves work well) each spring. Mountain laurel grows well beneath trees where it's lightly shaded. It's hardy to -20 degrees F, but mulching and a sheltered location helps it to do well during the winter. Mountain laurel will bloom in May and June. As soon as the blooms have faded, snip them off to help the plant spend its energies on next years blooms. You can also prune the shrub at this time to keep it small and bushier. Hope this information helps!

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