Should i plant a raised bed under this Maple Tree

jess2132000(PA)August 29, 2008

I was looking to plant a raised flower bed with some roses under a Maple Tree.Not sure if the raised bed around the tree is a good idea.. How would the roses do?? Would you do that and what kind of roses might you use?

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karl_bapst_rosenut(5a, NW Indiana)

Don't. The tree's roots will grow into the raised bed. You'll be fighting roots and shade. Roses do not grow well in shade. To grow properly they need at least 6 hours of sun daily.
Better to plant shallow rooting shade plants like hostas, etc.

    Bookmark   August 29, 2008 at 6:34PM
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gardenfanatic(MO zone5b)

Most plants will not grow well competing with maple roots, especially not roses. Even if they got enough sun (which they probably wouldn't), the maple roots would suck every bit of moisture and nutrients out of the soil.


    Bookmark   August 29, 2008 at 7:03PM
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diane_nj 6b/7a

What Karl and Deanna said. Maples are especially notorious for shallow roots and roots that are wide spreading. Don't do it, plant something else.

    Bookmark   August 29, 2008 at 7:17PM
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rosesnpots(z8 Tidewater area VA)

I agree that many roses will not work but don't tell that to my American Beauty Climber as she is planted between a Poplar and a Maple tree and at 6 1/2 feet tall she puts on quite a show each spring.

You may want to look at shade tolerant roses or shade tolerant roses that can grow in large containers.

    Bookmark   August 29, 2008 at 7:59PM
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Never a good idea to create a bed under a tree, if you value the tree. Trees don't like extra soil heaped on their roots, and root damage caused by cultivation can start a disease process that could ultimately kill the tree. What trees want is a large mulched area; even grass is serious competition. (The worst failure I ever had in roses was trying a rose hedge of rugosas near a silver maple-- the roses closest to the silver maple were malformed and did not bloom well. The hedge looked awful).

    Bookmark   August 29, 2008 at 8:43PM
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buford(7 NE GA)

You have to plant them beyond the drip line of the tree. But be aware that Maple roots do spread out quite a bit beyond the normal drip line.

    Bookmark   August 30, 2008 at 8:13AM
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diane_nj 6b/7a

I have a mature maple in my backyard with roots that have spread at least 30 feet.

    Bookmark   August 30, 2008 at 11:28AM
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buford(7 NE GA)

It depends on the type of maple too. Some get quite large, some don't.

    Bookmark   August 30, 2008 at 1:20PM
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Well here is the tree. I was looking to add Hosta and maybe a knockout and a evergreen bush or two. Not sure if I should build up around the tree or not. Really wanted to dress it up under it somehow. Any ideas

    Bookmark   August 31, 2008 at 1:53PM
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rosesnpots(z8 Tidewater area VA)


You have a beautiful yard and I can see why you want to plant some color under the Maple. I really can't give you expert advise on building up a flower bed around it. But have you thought of the Hostas or other shade tolerant plants as you talked about and maybe a bench with a few roses in container? This would make under you tree as a focal point in your yard. I do not know how many hours you have sun under the tree but shade tolerant roses can do fine with 4 hours of sun.

Good Luck

    Bookmark   August 31, 2008 at 6:17PM
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Terry Crawford

I can tell you from years of experience that trying to grow anything under maple trees doesn't work. Their root system is very shallow and too near the surface. I planted and killed more Sum & Substance hostas than I care to think about.

What I do to add splashes of color is to "plant" big pots of annual flowers such as impatiens or other colorful flowers under the tree using big colorful pottery pots.

I have big pots in several different glazes that I love, but I do have to take them inside my shed during the winter. I also have a hanging blue gazing globe that I also use for additional color that I hang from the tree branches of my Sunset Maple. Wind chimes are also a fun alternative.

    Bookmark   August 31, 2008 at 10:01PM
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Someone sent me this photo and I really like the idea but would pom pom junipers do ok and maybe boxwoods. Not sure about one knockout rose..

    Bookmark   September 1, 2008 at 8:36AM
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