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Fern Garden Under Oaks

Posted by amelia_pepper_lady LA (My Page) on
Sat, May 5, 07 at 10:56

I am starting on plans for a fern garden under several mature oaks. Most of the ferns will be evergreen varieties; I will also include some hostas as accents. This area must be attractive year-round it is adjacent to our winter entertaining area. I am on the border of zones 8 and 9. The area is somewhat low-lying. We have brick steps down to the area from the house.

My question involves preparation of the beds. Should I build up the beds a couple of inches or should I simply leave at the current level?

Follow-Up Postings:

RE: Fern Garden Under Oaks

I have many varieties of ferns under my burr oaks. Ostrich,lady,interrupted, christmas, japanese painted come to mind right off the bat. I had to clear a lot of brush and invasive sapplings, but I did not add any soil. The soil is rich and wonderful from years of composting oak leaves. My ferns all are happy and thriving. Roots do not seem to be a problem.

RE: Fern Garden Under Oaks

You should not build up your beds. Those roots of your lovely old oaks are very shallow and susceptible to damage from changes in grade. Always consider strongly at what might be below ground before making a lot of changes around the root/soil system of valuable trees.

RE: Fern Garden Under Oaks

I have dug, planted and replanted all over under my oaks. If I have chopped their roots, they don't care. I would say my oaks do not have shallow roots, however.

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