Tuesday, March 24, 2009

Save Time and Work While Adding Beauty!

When we moved into this house 6 years ago, it was a house in a field with only a handful of trees worth counting.  My husband soon set to work planting trees like a madman to the tune of several hundred pines, and dozens of ornamental and shade trees.

Tree base flowers matureThat’s all well and good until it's time to mow around them.  And guess who gets to do the lion’s share of that?  Yes, that would be me. 

When I’m in the zone, it’s every tree for itself.  For the first year or two, they had a pretty low survival rate. 

To make it easier to mow around the trees in our immediate yard, we took  to planting flowers at their bases. Or mulching rings around them.

In the picture above, you can see that one of my favorite flowers to plant at the bases of trees is the Black Eyed Susan.  Note, though, that my trees are still relatively small, and the flowers still get a healthy amount of morning and evening sun. 

I like to add in a few purple Irises for spring color.  This combination doesn’t even need mulch.  So if you already have bunches of  flowers which need to be divided, as I did, there will be nothing to buy!

Tree base flowers 1The rings of bright pretty flowers are beautiful just the way they are!     

I started a few patches of Vinca Vine last year and I’m looking forward to seeing them fill in and show off some pretty purple blossoms.

Tree Base flowers 2 My husband tucked in a few bulbs as well, which work beautifully at the base of more dense trees.  This way, by the time the tree leaves fill in, the flowers are pretty well spent anyway.

The trees are easier to mow around, and the flowers quickly crowd out the grass and weeds.  I love not having to go back and trim around each tree. 

More beautiful colors and less work throughout the summer means more time with my family.  That Works for Me! 

Don’t forget to check over at We Are THAT Family for more Works For Me Wednesday Tips!

Incidentally, now is a great time to be dividing and planting both Black Eyed Susans and Irises.


Holly said...

That looks so pretty! It reminds me of my grandma's yard.

Mari said...

It looks like you have a beautiful yard. We had the opposite problem. There were woods within 20 feet of our house. We cleared a large section, then planted some shade trees. We do put flowers around our trees too - it works well!

Amy Ellen said...

Thank you for this tip! I love color outside our windows... and I love anything that will cut down on yard work! Thanks again!
Amy Ellen of HealthBeginsWithMom.com

Keetha said...

I love all the shade, but I say "If hubby plants, hubby mows."

In fact, we don't have all those trees and hubby still mows.

Ali said...

Great tip! I will have to try this with my overabundance of daylilies and irises. We have 2 full size trees on our property....so are planting new trees whenever we can, I love trees and we really need the windbreak they can provide out here!

Noel said...

My husband's remedy for weedeating is to spray everything with chemicles so it DIES!! We are left with brown circles around every tree. I'd love to have grass or even weeds growing instead!!

Courtney said...

your yard looks so relaxing and fun. we have quite a ways to go to get it looking that pretty!

Lori said...

You're right...trees do make it difficult to mow around. Thankfully I have a strapping 17 year old boy to do that sweaty job! :) I love planting flowers around trees too...but when my husband gets behind the mower, look out flowers! He just mows right over them without thinking twice. :)
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mub said...

I really had to laugh about the "every tree for itself" comment. I'm invisoning these poor trees shaking on their roots hoping they'll be spared!

Ashley said...

Wow your yard looks AWESOME! Great ideas, my husband has been wanting to mulch around our trees for the past few years...maybe we will if we get to stay here! (He just lost his job)


Cindy said...

That's a great idea! We have two trees in our front yard (all the trees in the back are already inside a winding flower bed) that we could definitely do this with. Thanks for the tip.

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