When planting under trees, you have to take care so you don’t damage the tree roots while planting aoround trees.
For an easy care planting under a tree, carpet the ground with shade loving bulbs and perennial flowers that provide colorful blooms and lush foilage.
You can easily create a flowering tapestry when planting around and under a tree.
Combine plants that bloom at different seasons, that way, your under the tree shade garden will be alive with color and texture from spring until late fall.
Planting Under Trees Tips
Clear weeds and grasses from a 6 foot radius under the tree, being careful to avoid disturbing the tree roots. Spread a 2 inch layer of compost over the entire planting area.
In autumn, arrange Daffodil and Spring Starflower bulbs in natural looking drifts or clumps. Plant about 6-8 inches apart at 8 inches deep. Soak Poppy Anemone tubers overnight in water. Plant the tubers 4 inches apart and about 4-6 inches deep.
In spring or autumn, plant Periwinkle perennials between clumps of bulbs. Space plants 1-2 feet apart and spread runners in all directions.
After bulbs have stopped blooming in each season, do not remove the remaining foilage until it has turned yellow. Remove weeds as they appear.
Fill between bulbs with annuals and perennials for an all season flower show.
Mulch with compost to keep the soil moist and control weeds.
Flowers For Planting Under Trees
All Are Shadeloving Plants
Spring Starflower (ipheion uniflorum)
Star-shaped violet blue or white flowers in spring. Pale green leaves that smells of onions if crushed. H: 4-6 in., S. 2-3 in. Zones 6-9.
Periwinkle (vinca minor)
Lilac-blue flowers in spring, spreading stems with small, oval dark green leaves. Excellent groundcover for shade. H. 6 in., S. 1-3 feet. Zones 4-9.
Showy, cup-shaped spring flowers in brilliant red, pink or purple. Deeply cut fern-like leaves. Grown from knobby tuber. H. 1 foot, S. 9-12 in. Zones 7-10.
Daffodil “Rip Van Winkle”
Early spring blooming bulb with frilly, double yellow flowers and slender sword-like leaves. Height and spread 6-8 in. Zones 4-9.
Daffodil “Mount Hood”
An early spring flower bulb with trumpet-shaped blooms that open creamy, yellow and turn white. Slender sword-like leaves. H. 1-2 feet, S. 9-12 in. Zones 3-9.
More Perennial Shade Flowers
Planting Under Trees
Cup-shaped, yellow flowers with glossy green leaves. 2-3 in. Zones 4-9.
Flowers open green, which is unusual, then turn white or purple. 2 feet. Zones 4-9.
Pink, white or red spring flowers. Evergreen foilage, 1 foot. Zones 3-8.
Semi-evergreen groundcover with pretty blue flower spikes. 6inhes. Zones 3-8.
Blue flowers with yellow centers and lance like leaves. One of most beloved early spring flowers, perfect for under planting daffodil bulbs 8 in. Zones 3-8.
Crocus sieberi “Tricolor”
Purple, white and orange blooms with grass-like leaves. Very early blooms, even coming through snow. 6 in. Zones 4-6
Red and yellow flowers and blue green leaves, Native to North America, 1-3 feet. Zones 3-6.
Allegheny Foam Flower
Spikes of white spring flowers. Maple-like leaves. 1 foot. Zones 3-9.
New England Aster
Starry, pink-purple flowers from late summer to autumn. 3 feet. Zones 3-9.
A very long-blooming annual, but a bi-annual in warm climates. Pink, white, or redflowers. Dark green leaves. 15 in. All zones.
Fall-flowering. Bright blue flowers with green leaves. 8 in. Zones 3-8.