Move the garden? Trees shading some now.

wertach zone 7-B SCMay 31, 2012

My huge 60 + year old oak trees are starting to shade the garden around 4:30 PM. It is a blessing to work in the shade after working most of the day in the sun on my job. They are 50' away from the garden so I don't think they are drawing much water.

It gets full sun at the crack of dawn, so its getting 10 hours of full sun, more on the east side. I have room to move it about 50' east with a little sod busting.

Personally, I think it may be better as is. The shade keeps the late afternoon sun from cooking me and the plants. But on the other hand, more sun is supposed to be better from what I read here and elsewhere.

Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo

All you need to ask yourself is if you are happy with the results of your current garden? If yes, leave it alone, if no consider moving it to a sunnier location. Personally I'd leave it alone, I like a little shade in the evening.

    Bookmark   May 31, 2012 at 3:03PM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo
Stellabee(7, Atlanta)

I'm with WeirdTrev, if it ain't broke, don't fix it. Plus, there is such a thing as too much sun on plants. I used to garden in Florida, and the sun destroyed most of my garden by June. I love gardening in Georgia now, but I still notice that some parts of my garden get way too much sun.

I envy your afternoon shade:-)

    Bookmark   May 31, 2012 at 3:49PM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo

I would also leave it. 10+ hours of sun should be enough. Enjoy your shade.

    Bookmark   May 31, 2012 at 4:40PM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo
wertach zone 7-B SC

Thanks for reassuring me! The garden is doing well as is and I think it is improving actually. It was my Dads (even though I have been working it for 20 years, second year without Dad supervising) and he never added anything but 10-10-10.

I reduced the size and have been adding as much mulch as I can get my hands on. Dad didn't believe in mulch, he would actually bush hog the corn and drag it in to the woods with his tractor!

He said that all that stuff laying on the ground would make the bugs worse and attract rats. He was scared of rats from a bad experience with a field rat when he was a kid. One ran up his leg and scratched him all over.

If you wanted to get away from him, all you had to say was. "Is that a rat?" He would disappear faster than Houdini!

I love him and miss him, but he was hard headed about right and wrong in the garden and other things.

    Bookmark   May 31, 2012 at 5:12PM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo
susan2010(6 Massachusetts)

Another thing to consider (and something I've done) is to have an arborist prune the trees to increase sunlight. They can do that without damaging the health or appearance of the trees.

    Bookmark   May 31, 2012 at 7:15PM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo
howelbama(7 NJ)

Why not leave it and expand into the other area you have with stuff that craves sun like watermelon . :) my garden only gets around 8 hours and does quite well, so 10+ with the benefit of late afternoon shade sounds ideal to me.

    Bookmark   May 31, 2012 at 8:40PM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo
nancyjane_gardener(Zone 8ish North of San Francisco in the "real" wine country)

I'm in the same boat. The trees aren't mine so I can't trim them. Actually, I probably could, cause the property next door is going up for auction, but to get an arborist in to trim 40-50ft trees would cost a bundle!
I have a few years left with the garden where it is, but I'm starting to use the beds that are shadiest for cooler weather crops, hoping they'll keep a little longer. My lettuce is still going strong, no bolting yet!
I have another 20x100ft area that we are going to slowly develop more into a potager type garden than I have now (it's pretty potagery as it sits, but with the new garden, I plan to make it REALLY pretty!)

    Bookmark   May 31, 2012 at 9:00PM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo

There is lots of things that will grow well in 2 hours of sun. Tomatoes, in my opinion, will do just as well with 10 hours as with 16 hours. They will do OK with 6 hours. Really, only melon and watermelon need the fullest of sun, and most plants actually prefer less. WT has it right.

    Bookmark   May 31, 2012 at 10:01PM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo

Yep - most of my garden gets only 5-6 hours of direct sun, due to trees on neighbors property. I suspect I would get bigger crops with more sun, but It works well enough for me. I even got a few midget melons last year before some sort of virus took them out. I got twice the tomatoes than my neighbor who has a much sunnier spot.

    Bookmark   June 1, 2012 at 6:21AM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo

Grandma had large maple trees across the driveway from her large garden. So it would get shade in the later afternoon. She always had a fabulous garden. Mine only gets about 6 hours and does pretty good.

    Bookmark   June 1, 2012 at 8:44AM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo

Are there any veggies that do better with a little shade? I have the same situation, large liquid amber tree shading a corner of the garden in the afternoon. There is one corner that I can tell it affects a little. I have root veggies and some lettuce in that area, so right now the lettuce is looking great, the root veggies are growing slow (if they came up at all, I have 1 beet, 3 carrots, only the radishes are looking good).

    Bookmark   June 1, 2012 at 12:45PM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo

I have had the same deal for 5 years & still get more tomatoes, cukes, peppers & what ever.
I even get some sun burn on a few fruits.
I say leave it. I did use a turn plow to root prune the trees.

    Bookmark   June 2, 2012 at 1:48AM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo

Down south protection from late afternoon sun is a plus. I would say the situation sounds perfect.

    Bookmark   June 2, 2012 at 6:39AM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo
girlgroupgirl(8 ATL)

allhaileris, depending where you are, (like, in the South) root veggies can be finicky at times and have poor germination. I find beets especially like that some years. Radishes are almost always good.
Lettuce, and all green crops are perfect in your situation as are the root crops. In the winter you'll get full-sun for both the greens and root crops too, when the tree looses leaves.
I'm working with an arborist (two more trees to come down, my last two after loosing a total of 20 as an aftermath of the Atlanta tornado) to plant trees carefully around my garden to block harsh sun so that I can harvest more and better veggies. Some shade is a blessing in hot summer places and helps stave off evaporation if the garden is well mulched. Afternoon shade is helpful for perennial bunching onions, asparagus, summer squashes, many herbs like parsley, salad burnet, basil would work well there. Even bush beans are fine if they get a good 6 hours of sun. You can even plant lettuces in the shade of those plants and have a huge bounty.

    Bookmark   June 2, 2012 at 9:22AM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo

I have the same situation and there isn't more sunshine elsewhere in my little clearing in the woods where we live and work at a year round camp. It's not ideal to have large trees around, but you can still grow things even if it takes longer to maturity.

I'd suggest you watch the sun patterns as the seasons change & draw them out on paper, so you know which beds have spring sun or winter sun. Summer sun is easy. We had a huge ice storm in January and at least a dozen trees in lost 25+ feet at the top. They took down a lot of branches as they fell, so we have an increase of sunshine now but it was a huge mess. When we have an arborist out to remove those damaged trees will have even more sun though filtered some.

Warm weather crops are especially slower to maturity and I don't even bother attempting corn.

I used only chicken & rabbit manures from our animals & homemade compost for many years, but in the past 4 years or so switched to making horse manure compost to increase the volume for enough organic matter to remain constant and not all disappear. We also started adding a complete organic granular fertilizer according to the label in spring when planting and it's sped up growth enough that we are able to grow more than summer vegetables.

It's just harder for the plants with less sun in early spring & late fall, but if I can get them almost mature by mid-August when the sun lowers in position the warm weather crops ripen still & cool crops hold well over fall & winter. The little window between late March & mid July is prime time for growing everything, so I try to leave space for late crops to be planted in mid July for overwintering.

Hope that helps~

    Bookmark   June 4, 2012 at 4:36PM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo

>> are there any plants that do better in the shade?

It depends on the type of shade. If you get complete shade for too long, most vegetables won't grow much. But if you are talking filtered shade, everything except squashes and tomatoes/peppers will do well. Cauliflower and broccoli do especially well that way.

And it seems that in general, afternoon shade is tolerated much better than morning shade.

    Bookmark   June 4, 2012 at 4:36PM
Sign Up to comment
More Discussions
Artichoke Failure, HELP!!!
I am in zone 7a, middle TN, and attempting to grow...
Boo hoo! Purple sprouting broccoli didn't survive the winter!
I was looking forward to early broccoli this year....
ffreidl z5a
cutworms and diatomaceous earth
I had regular problems with cutworms and seedlings....
What's Growing On Inside This Winter
Been getting all my vegetables started for my spring/summer...
what varieties of watermelons are you growing?
what varieties of watermelons are you growing?
People viewed this after searching for:
© 2015 Houzz Inc. Houzz® The new way to design your home™