Pine trees can provide many benefits if taken care of properly. They can provide shade, making the space under them cool and refreshing.
In addition, they’re a great privacy screen between properties. They’re also reliable windbreakers since they don’t lose foliage.
Furthermore, they can protect soil from erosion because of the thick needles that keep the soil from being blown away by rain and wind.
If you have pine trees on your property, you may consider landscaping them to maximize their use.
Here’s an article to guide you in upgrading your lawn and making the most of your pines. So, read on!
1. Choose a Pine Variety
With pine landscaping, you use pine trees as the central pieces of your design or set them as background or foreground materials.
Either way, you’ll need to choose a pine variety that’d serve your purpose.
You may refer to landscaping consultants, such as Bend Pine Nursery, for expert advice on pine landscaping.
If you’re looking for drought-tolerant types, you may consider Eastern white, shortleaf, and Virginia type.
If you’re after pine trees known for a windbreak, you may choose ponderosa, Eastern white, and loblolly.
You can also pick Norway spruce and Green giant arborvitae if you prefer fast-growing species.
To experiment with short pines, you may try mugo types, such as gnomes, enci, and compacta.
2. Consider a Ground-covering Plant
Some flowers and veggies are excellent ground covers for pine trees. Generally, they can provide a green carpet for the lawn.
In choosing these plants, you may think about having the ones that could thrive under the shade and with limited resources.
In addition, consider selecting plants that could live on acidic soil as the fallen needles could increase the soil’s acidity.
Some of the popular choices as ground cover are California strawberries and Yerba Buena.
The former can thrive in a moisture-restricted environment and can produce edible berries.
On the other hand, the latter is an itch-free option that could create a dense carpet.
Aside from these two, you may also try Yarrow to add feathery foliage to your lawn.
Apart from these, you may also consider the following:
- Azaleas: A popular flowering shrub, azaleas grow in a shaded environment and acidic soil.
- Hydrangeas: Known for their stunning flowers, hydrangeas adapt to the soil’s acidity and even change their color based on the soil’s acidity.
- Lily Of The Valley: This fragrant flowering plant thrives in a partially shaded environment and can survive on moist soil. However, the lily of the valley is poisonous when ingested.
- Creeping Phlox: This plant complements the pine’s dark brown trunk and green leaves. The creeping phlox also thrives on moist soil and has beautiful purple flowers.
- Bleeding Heart: Named for its heart-shaped flowers, the bleeding heart loves a cool environment where it can survive most months except summer.
3. Think About Mulching
Aside from setting up plants under the pine trees, you may consider mulching to cover the ground.
Mulching limits weed growth and fortify the soil, preventing it from compacting.
In addition, it removes the residual effects of fertilizers and pesticides.
Furthermore, mulching can trap water that the ground-covering plants and pine trees can consume.
By absorbing excess water, mulching helps prevent a flood, especially in low-lying areas.
In many cases, landscapers and homeowners use pine bark, grass clippings, shredded hardwood, and wood chips to create mulching.
To make the most of the mulching, you may need to spread it evenly and regularly away from the trees every day.
This would prevent pileups that cause too much moisture retention that may be damaging to the pine trees and plants.
4. Cut the Lower Branches Off Your Pine
In some cases, you may need to cut the lower branches of the pines to deal with the landscape selection.
Pruning the unhealthy and damaged portions of the trees can help avoid falling debris from the pine tree and allow the regrowth of lush branches.
Aside from enhancing the pine tree’s natural shape, cutting and pruning can also improve the growth of the plants under the pine tree.
Generally, the cutting provides a better space for the plants to receive more sunlight and moisture for their growth.
5. Place Rocks Around or Under the Pine
Placing rocks around or under a pine tree may be necessary if your lawn or garden is prone to erosion and similar issues.
For this purpose, you may consider using stone to create walls for terracing slopes on your property. You may also use rocks to create boundary lines.
Aside from this, you could use rocks of different sizes to enclose the pine trees and their immediate ground covers.
However, you may need to give ample space for the tree’s root growth. The rule of thumb is 8-10 inches of distance between the tree trunk and retaining wall.
In addition, you may need to ensure that the soil is less compact to be breathable for the plants and allow proper water flow.
You may also consider the stones’ shape, size, and color to provide extra features to the landscape.
This also applies if you’re planning to grow pine trees for the first time.
6. Maintain the Existing Soil Level
Whether you’ve built a retaining wall or a raised bed for your pine trees, you need to fill it in with enough soil.
Too little soil may cause aesthetic imbalance, while excessive soil may cause the tree trunk to rot.
You may wrap the trunk with a plastic sheet to prevent water seepage from getting into the trunk, preventing rotting.
You may also create a barrier to protect the tree and help it thrive despite the challenges.
Pine landscaping is a challenging task, especially for first-time homeowners who want to learn the craft independently.
It may require a fair amount of time, commitment, money, and effort.
Fortunately, this article can help you take care of your pine trees and make them thrive.
It offers practical advice from mulching, pruning, and laying ground cover to putting up stone walls or barriers.
Guided by these insights, property owners can make the most of their pine trees, paving the way for their best landscape.