Asked on May 30, 2018

How to grow grass under Maple 🍁 trees.

I have 3 large trees in my backyard. We have tried to grow grass since purchasing this home. As the trees grow I lose more grass each year. Any/all suggestions appreciated.

  10 answers
  • Vimarhonor Vimarhonor on May 30, 2018

    I’ve given up trying to grow grass under my Maple tree, resorting to a groundcover like sedum and hostas. The shallow roots and giant canopy makes grass establishment near impossible in my situation.

  • Emily Emily on May 30, 2018

    grass will not grow under these trees, root system as well as shade prevent it.

  • Ken Ken on May 30, 2018

    Trees keep the rain and sun away from the grass as well as pulling nutrients away. Compacting the soil by enjoying the space under the trees also kills grass. You could aerate the soil and remove lower branches under the trees to help with sunlight. A better choice may be to seek an alternative ground cover.

  • Nancy Turner Nancy Turner on May 30, 2018

    Under our huge maple tree is the one place that we actually have lush thick grass. I am sure they used grass for shady areas.

  • William William on May 30, 2018

    Hard to grow grass under trees. Shade, roots, sap prevent it.

  • Michael Pick Michael Pick on Jun 01, 2019

    I have two very large maple trees in my front yard. They must be 50 to 70 years old.

    My yard is around 30 meters across and trees at each side of yard.

    I get rid of the leaves every fall.

    By spring , close to half of my yard is dirt.

    the only way I can get grass to grow is to put about an inch of topsoil where needed and put a lot of shade seed on. I also feed it twice a year.

    I end up having a very nice lawn but it’s a lot of work and about $200 in seed and top soil and feed

    I’ve been doing this for 6 years and I always get a great looking lawn but it’ takes a lot of care.

  • John John on Jul 15, 2020

    I have two Maples and no question the grass can struggle under these trees but I've adapted and have had success. Some trees are impossible in that they actively fight against turf, oaks for example. Assuming you are in a cool season grass zone (more common tree up north), you may want to overseed every fall. Fine fescue and some kentucky blue varieties perform better in the shade. Fine fescue is ideal for shade but I like a mix with some KBG since it has some ability to spread. Keep your mowing height higher to increase size of the leaf in your shaded area. Spoon feed fertilizer (less fert more often) which is generally a good idea anyway. I use a liquid fert so that it is absorbed by the turf and not the trees. Make sure it receives irrigation but be careful not to over-water since it will not dry as quickly and fungus could become a problem.

  • Johnavallance82 Johnavallance82 on Aug 16, 2021

    Better to make border under trees as No grass grows well under trees!