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Planting a tree, roots below weed control and gravel

Hi all,
I'm looking to plant a tree (Laburnum), but it's roots will be below weed control fabric and gravel. (i.e. it will be in the middle of a gravelled area.
Does anyone have any experience of doing this and will the tree be OK? The soil below the gravel is good and I can apply liquid feed at regular intervals. The weed control fabric is woven and allows water to filter through.

Any advice, as always, much appreciated.




  • LoxleyLoxley NottinghamPosts: 4,898
    It should be fine, just cut a hole for the rootball and rake the gravel back in place. They are nitrogen fixing trees so there's probably not much need to apply fertiliser.  
  • NikonPhilNikonPhil Posts: 31
    Thanks WillDB.
  • NollieNollie Girona, Catalunya, Northen Spain.Posts: 6,355
    Yes I agree it will be fine and grow away happily without too much intervention and won’t need feeding. Just dig a good planting hole, make sure it has good drainage and water well until established.

    I wonder if this is the right tree, tho, for a gravelled area? Any deciduous, flowering tree will make a right mess of your gravel as all that organic matter dropping on it will be music to the ears of weeds. Don’t plant it anywhere near your house or other buildings either - we inherited one in a previous house and the roots got everywhere! So long as you are happy it’s the tree for you, enjoy it, they do look stunning when in flower.
  • NikonPhilNikonPhil Posts: 31
    Hi Nollie,
    They're good points - the roots shouldn't be a problem, but the organic matter might! I guess I'm going to have to live with the problem though and tackle it at the time with something :(

  • FairygirlFairygirl west central ScotlandPosts: 48,032
    My parents had one in the front garden from when I was a young child. When Dad got rid of the grass, he covered the area with membrane and gravel. The tree was perfectly fine. 
    I think he used one of those leaf blower thingies to collect fallen leaves. He had the kind you can change to suck instead of blow  :)
    It's a place where beautiful isn't enough of a word....

  • NikonPhilNikonPhil Posts: 31
    Thanks Fairygirl - I have a leaf blower / hoover, so can use that when necessary. :)

  • FairygirlFairygirl west central ScotlandPosts: 48,032
    It's a place where beautiful isn't enough of a word....

  • Joy*Joy* Posts: 571
    When I plant a tree of any size I also put in a piece of pipe which is just above soil level and as deep as the roots so that water can be poured in and reaches the root ball. Occasionally I drill holes along the length of it. I've used corrugated pipe designed as a conduit for other pipes and more recently the conduit plastic pipe designed for gas pipes. All have been scrounged as off cuts from the building site. When the tree has got going after a couple of years say, the pipe can be buried by mulch. My strawberry tower pot did nothing last year as the water never got to the bottom but this year has done well having a length of plastic pipe with holes in so that every layer gets watered. The plant in the top soon covered the end of the pipe and can be moved aside for watering. 
  • FoxiesFoxies Posts: 60
    What a useful idea Joy - thank you for the tip.  :)
  • Interesting idea  :)  ty
    Be happy
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