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Shropshire, United Kingdom Gb

Area around mature apple trees. I have struggled with this area for years and have come to realise I need to do something about it. Problem is previous owners have planted lots of narcissi around the tree which come up every spring, then you have to wait 6 weeks after flowering which doesn’t do the grass any good. By the time I have cut back the foliage the leaves have developed on apple tree above so grass has no access to light or water so it limps on over the summer. I would like to dig up grass around the perimeter of the tree and put down gravel or some kind of substrate? Can’t put down membrane to stop grass trying to come up between the gravel as got bulbs underneath! Any suggestions what I can do to allow bulbs to come up but put something down to stop the grass? Your thought & suggestions hugely appreciated. (the dark patches are where I have reseeded)

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you could do bark or slate chippings but I'd put an edging to hold the bits in place or at least to reduce the amount that gets flung about by the birds.

4 Jul, 2021


Did you try the ideas suggested in your earlier question (2nd May) I'd hoped that lifting the leaves from lying on the grass might have solved the problem? Or you could do what many growers do and remove the grass in a suitably sized circle round the trunk and mulch it with eg chipped bark. The bulbs would grow through it and could be tied back after flowering as suggested before? I think you'd have less of a problem with that as the bark is easily raked when the leaves have gone, and topped up if need be. Chippings might get into the grass and damage the mower?
Oh, sorry Eileen, we must have crossed...

5 Jul, 2021


no worries Sue, great minds think alike!

5 Jul, 2021


Amsterdam, I think your idea of using gravel is a good one. Make a big circle digging out the grass, but put pavers around the edge so that the mower can’t throw up the gravel. The narcissi coming through will look lovely.

6 Jul, 2021


Thank you for your suggestions and encouragement. With the school holidays around the corner and hopefully some summer weather, it’s a project I am hoping to complete before the autumn.

6 Jul, 2021

How do I say thanks?

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