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Ideas or suggestions

Hi there.

I wondered if anyone had any suggestions or ideas about planting under the trees in the photos. I've spent today clearing away the elderberry bushes, nettles and other weeds that were growing at the base of the trees (2 Scot's Pine and 2 i've not yet identified.) You can see the burning pile in the foreground of one of the photos which is most of the woody stuff i've taken out today.  There is another day's work left to clear the wood and branches that have been left to collect at the base of the trees and I'm thinking of removing some of the lower branches on the trees next to the fence to let in some more light (in time I might remove 1 of them but they are staying for now as there are birds nesting in them).

So my ask is does anyone have any ideas about what to plant? I'm assuming the soil is going to be acidic from all of the pine needles that have built up and there are also lots of rabbits and hedgehogs in this part of the garden.

Thanks ...


  • josusa47josusa47 Posts: 3,532
    edited April 2019
    Am I seeing double?  2 scots pine + 2 unidentified = 4, but I am sure I can see six trees in the photos. Doesn't matter.
    Elder and nettle give a lot and ask for next to nothing in return.  Elderflowers feed pollinators, elderberries feed birds, and humans; nettle feeds butterfly larvae, and humans, and is valuable for composting and making liquid feed.  So please consider sparing some of them.  If, as you say, the soil is on the acid side, Rhododendron ponticum is notoriously happy among trees, and there are lots to choose from.  R. ponticum "Luteum" aka Azalea Luteum has yellow flowers which smell like those old fashioned carnation button holes that used to be handed out at weddings.  That's what I would plant. And/or native bluebells, Hyacinthoides non-scripta.
  • mike164mike164 Posts: 13
    Thank you @josusa47

    Although I've cut back a number of elderberry bushes which were damaged and in poor shape - they are not gone, just cut back to the ground and need a little TLC this year as they obviously thrive under the trees and will fill some of the gaps. I'd thought about Rhododendron and Azalea - thanks for the suggestions.

    Lots and lots of nettles elsewhere in the garden and trying to garden with the wildlife that lives there in mind.

    And yes, there are 6 trees :) !

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