newbie - question about watering shade bed under sugar maple

neil_n_kyOctober 7, 2005

hey everyone,

i just got into landscaping this year as i got a new neighbor that has really transformed his place into a beautiful yard. i have what i am pretty sure is a sugar maple in my front yard, light does filter thru and i have managed to plant oak leaf hydrangeas, astillbes, azaleas, and rhododendrons under there without hitting alot of big roots. the soilis also nice and black. i am praying they will live, they have so far. from reading here i have found that soaker hoses would be the best for watering. so far i have used a stationary sprinkler and let it run for about an hour or so twice a week. this tree is right next to my driveway and i am buying vanhoutte spireas to line the driveway this weekend and this will complete my shade bed. the plants have been planted for two weeks, nothing looks wilted yet, if it even shows signs i get the sprinkler out. i wanted to find out how long and how often i should water with the soaker hoses. i have read on here somewhere 30 minutes at a time but i haven't found how often, i don't want to get the ground too wet as i read oakleaf hydrangeas don't like to be setting in lots of water, but i want everything to live and floursish, it has been so ugly under the tree for years i am so excited to have alot of plants and a rock walkway there now. i even plan to put a small streetlight under there in the spring hopefully. does someone have an idea how long to run the soaker hoses and how often. i hope to get them this weekend too. thanks guys for any help you may have.


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If it is a silver maple, the maple will suck up the water. I used to run my soakers about an hour at a time. I also have an oakleaf hydrangea under my tree--no problem. However, with time, my soaker hose became buried under compost. It has sprung several leaks which are hard to find, so I now use an overhead sprayer. Be prepared to water regularly in the summer. Also, you will probably need to move the astilbe. They need a lot of water and the maple will not share enough. They will look nice in the spring but evenually the leaves will look crispy, and if they do not get enough water, they will go dormant. That being said, I have a beautiful shade garden planted under my maple. Just pick the right plants. May I suggest using epidmedium as a ground cover. It tolerates dry soil and competes well with the tree roots and is not aggressive.
It will make you happy come August.

    Bookmark   October 8, 2005 at 8:38AM
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thanks freebird,

my maple difinitely is not a silver maple, i think it is a sugar maple. light does filter through and the morning sun even directly hits under the tree i think. it is on the east in front of my house. i let a sprinkler run for an hour or more at a time and the soil stayed wet for several days. so u think soaking 1 hour at a time three times a week will be good for now. they are all new plants. i know it isn't summer now. i also plan to check into the epidmedium. i am new and don't know what it is.

    Bookmark   October 10, 2005 at 2:20PM
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