One of the conditions for proper tree care is the presence of a weed-free, well-dug area of land around the trunk, approximately equal in diameter to the crown. In young specimens, the near-stem circle is not too large, but adults require more basal space. So that this land does not stand idle, it can be turned into an elegant flower garden. A flower bed around the tree will allow you to combine business with pleasure: get a good harvest of fruits, and admire elegant flowers all season.
If you follow the rules for combining plants, soil selection and watering, you can get a very original decoration for your personal plot.
Principles for decorating a flower bed around a tree
The first thing you should pay attention to is the state of the root zone. Dense crowns give too dense shade in which flowers will not survive. For example, spruce trees love acidic soil and cast a shadow that is almost impenetrable to the sun, so arranging a flower garden under them is meaningless. A lacy translucent apple tree shadow is perfect for most flowers.
There are two opinions about the preparation of soil for a flower bed: some argue that it is not necessary to dig up the soil so as not to damage the root system, while others - that the soil needs to be prepared as for a regular flower bed, that is, to dig, but not too deeply. Both opinions have a right to exist. To choose the best way, it is enough to compare the advantages and disadvantages of each:
- digging the earth will give oxygen access to the roots, destroy weeds, pest larvae, help evenly distribute fertilizers;
- when digging, you can damage the roots of a tree, especially small ones, destroy the beneficial microflora of the soil, open up frost access to the root system.
To arrange a really beautiful flower bed around a tree, you should correctly combine the colors of flowers and foliage. Also, in any flower garden, the principle of matching flowers in height is important: the higher the plant, the further from the edge it is located.
What you need to consider when arranging a flower garden around the trunk:
- the structure of the root system;
- choice of flowers for a flower garden;
- the compatibility of plants in a flower bed;
- changeable flowering dates;
- flower and tree requirements for soil composition and watering.
The state of the tree depends on the competent choice of the "neighbor". The flower bed will help to retain moisture in the root zone, protect against pests and weeds. It is advisable to use only natural materials to create a flower garden around the trunk: bark, needles, broken brick, boards, ceramic tiles, etc.
Choosing a tree for a flower garden
You can arrange beautiful flower beds only around mature trees. Young seedlings require more care (regular watering, top dressing), so the ground around the trunk should remain empty. The roots can go deep into the ground or spread in the subsurface layer to a depth of half a meter. In the first case, the flowers planted in the flowerbed will not interfere with the tree, but in the second, the root systems of the plants can prevent each other from developing normally. Trees with deep, taproot or branched root systems include apple, plum, pear, mountain ash, and hawthorn.
You can make a flower garden under a tree with deep roots using shade-loving plants, flowers, or ornamental grasses.
Superficial root systems have:
- horse chestnut, birch, pine, oak.
Most ornamental plants do not take root in the shade of these species. Sweet cherry has a horizontal root system, but with an ideal soil composition, a vertical taproot is formed, so the arrangement of a flower bed around the trunk depends on local conditions.
How to choose flowers for a flower bed under a tree
Choosing flowers for a flower bed around a tree trunk is slightly different from choosing plants for a regular flower garden. The rules for selecting plants by color, budding time, requirements for soil composition and watering remain unchanged, but sun-loving species cannot be chosen for a shaded root area.
You can choose contrasting combinations or plant plants with a smooth color transition. A neutral green background will accentuate bright colors. The flowerbed looks harmonious, in which the color intensity increases from the edges to the middle. Saturated reds and purples do not mix well side by side, but they can be diluted with whites or light tones.
Some flowers not only decorate the area around the trunk, they also protect against pests and diseases:
- lily of the valley is able to protect cherries and cherries from moniliosis and fruit rot;
- nasturtium, marigolds, calendula give apple and cherry trees protection from nematodes and aphids.
Bulbous, lubelia, cineraria, ageratum are also suitable for a shaded flower bed around a tree. You can use creeping or ground cover species, begonias, bells, geraniums. Pansies, daffodils, crocuses, daisies successfully coexist with the apple tree.
It is recommended to plant only lily of the valley, lungwort or ferns next to the birch. You can also use flowers with early flowering (woodlands, daffodils, tulips), which will have faded by the time the tree is covered with dense foliage. Exotic orchids, heather or similar plants are suitable for too dark flower beds under conifers. The usual garden flowers will not stand such a neighborhood.
Important! Perennial ornamental plants are not recommended to be planted in a flower bed around a tree.
How to make a flower bed around a tree with your own hands
Start by choosing a tree. Fruit trees with a deep root system are ideal for creating a flower garden. To make a flower bed around an apple, plum or pear tree with your own hands, you need:
- Mark the place of the future flower garden. Remove sod if necessary.
- Arrange a temporary fence made of plastic strips or special metal strips. It is not necessary to do this, but it is more convenient to carry out backfilling with a temporary fence.
- Prepare the soil. Remove all weeds, large debris and grass. The earth must remain "bare".
- Find roots. Carefully loosen the soil around the trunk with a small spatula. Note the found roots. You can stick a tall branch with bright markings next to it (a piece of fabric, a piece of colored cord).
- Dig up the free areas between the roots to a depth of about 10 cm. Carefully select the soil from them. Pour a fertile soil mixture into the remaining niches. The choice of its type depends on the variety of flowers. It's good to shed the ground.
- Plant the selected flowers. Tamp the soil a little around the roots. Water the finished flower bed thoroughly again.
- Plots of land left empty are recommended to be mulched (covered) with sawdust, grated bark or needles. This will protect the soil from drying out, the appearance of weeds and pests.
Experts recommend filling the prepared area with shavings before planting flowers, but you can do this after.
When preparing the soil, you should not pour soil in the immediate vicinity of the trunk, so as not to create a condition for its decay. In addition, if a high layer of soil appears around it, it can put down additional roots.
Important! The first month after planting is especially important for rooting. During this period, it is advisable to organize regular watering of the flower beds, and then moisten the soil as needed.
DIY ideas for flower beds under a tree
The simplest design option for a flower bed around an apple tree and other garden species in the country is a flower garden without a border (see photo).
It is a little more difficult to arrange a flower bed with a border of stone, wood or brick. It will take more time and money, but the result will be pleasing for many years. Very original flower beds are obtained by using the unevenness of the relief.
A flower bed made of bricks under a tree
Brick, cladding or plain red, along with wild stone, decorative blocks or paving stones, is well suited for creating an outline fence of a flower garden.
If a fence made of brick or stone is supposed, it is recommended to arrange a concrete foundation around the perimeter of the future flower bed. He will take on the weight of the fence. It is important to leave water drainage holes in the foundation monolith. The drainage in this case must be at least 30 cm.
High flower bed under a tree
A raised flower bed around a tree trunk can be arranged with planks, curb tape, brick, wild stone and other materials that will fence off the area of the future flower garden and allow the soil layer to be slightly raised. The boards are fastened with a corner or self-tapping screws, the curb tape is dug in about a third of the width, brick and stone are laid out in the form of a closed figure (circle, oval, rectangle, abstract figure).
Before starting the installation of the fence, the ground around the trunk is cleared of debris and weeds, the roots are marked, and excess soil is selected. After installing the curb, the space of the flower bed is drained using broken red brick or expanded clay. A layer of soil mixture is poured on top, a suitable proportion of the selected colors is poured, it is well moistened. After a while, if the wet earth has settled, you can fill up the soil and only then plant seedlings or sow seeds.
Under some trees, you can create multi-tiered flower beds. It is important to make sure that there is a free approach to the tree trunk for maintenance and pruning. A slightly recessed area is left directly around the trunk, in which the soil layer from the beginning of the root collar does not exceed 10 cm. Another condition is the presence of a good drainage system so that the tree trunk does not rot.
Important! To create a tall flower bed, you need durable materials that can withstand the weight of the soil. Experts do not recommend making tall flower beds that are too large.
Original flower bed under the tree
Rustic-style flower beds with wildflowers, spicy greens, decorative sunflowers, fenced with wattle look original. The most unusual items are used for decorations: an old bicycle, a milk can, a garden tool, a baby pot, etc.
Photos of the original flower beds under the trees:
Two in one: a flower bed and a cozy seating area with an elegant bench. The flower garden is decorated with funny figures, next to the bench there is a tall flowerpot with flowers.
Using an old garden tool as a flower bed decoration. A rusty wheelbarrow simultaneously serves as a decor and forms the second tier of the flower garden.
A flower bed around a tree in a country house or a personal plot is the optimal combination of benefits and beauty. The shaded area under the crown of the tree does not stand idle, does not spoil the appearance. The planted flowers retain moisture, protect the tree from pests and diseases. It is quite simple to create a flower bed in the root zone if you correctly combine the tree species and plant varieties, take into account the peculiarities of the soil and the plant care requirements.