Eight Plants to Plant Under Trees

variety of plants under a large tree

Plants that are suited to live under trees are adapted to live in areas of low light and low water. The base of a large tree can be beautifully accented by a thick garden of low lying shade loving plants. This article will help you decide what to plant under your trees by describing eight plants that are adapted to live in low light and low water conditions.

1. English Ivy

English Ivy is a perennial plant that is grown mostly for its dainty foliage and its ability to populate a large area. Ivy is great to plant under trees because it will spread around the base of the tree and may even climb up the trunk of the tree.

2. Sword Fern

The Sword fern is a low lying perennial whose branches can grow to lengths of three or four feet. This plant is well suited to live under cedar and pine trees in cool and rainy climates. It is the perfect choice for people living in the Pacific Northwest where sword ferns grow wildly as a native species.

patio and fire pit surrounded by ferns

3. Vinca Minor Vines

The short and rapid spreading ground cover; vinca minor vines are a great choice to plant in the area under trees. Its foliage is beautiful enough to be planted alone and it produces dainty light blue flowers in the springtime.

4. Daffodil:

Daffodils are well suited to live in the low moisture and low light conditions under even the tallest trees. Simply plant daffodil bulbs in the fall and wait for them to sprout and grow in the spring. Daffodils will only show their presence during their blooming season and are not the best choice if you’re looking for a plant that will stay green year round.

5. Rosemary

The herbaceous plant Rosemary is well suited to live under trees and will only require a supplemental watering during hot and arid summers. The needles of the rosemary plant have been cultivated for centuries and used as potpourri or in the kitchen as a culinary spice.

flowering rosemary plant

6. Clumping Bamboo

Bamboo may become invasive if it isn’t cared for for a number of years; this plant is not one to plant and forget about. However, clumping bamboo makes an undeniably beautiful companion to any tree. It will spread throughout an area and grow tall and strong in low light and low moisture.

7. California Iris

Its vertical growth rarely exceeds two feet, which makes it an ideal species to plant under younger trees. In the spring, the California Iris produces cream, purple, blue or white flowers that have a pleasant fragrance.

8. Columbine

The wildflower columbine is a hardy plant that is both drought and shade tolerant; it is adaptable to even the worst conditions. The columbine begins to blossom in late May and produces a wide array of colored blossoms. These plants tend to cross pollinate and hybridize which causes the plants to mutate and produce unique blossoms and foliage.