Hydroseeding around Trees – How to do it, tips and tricks

We are very lucky to have excellent tree coverage in the UK and this offers a whole host of benefits.

As well as contributing to the ecosystem,  trees are often considered to be the universal answer to control soil erosion. Tree roots are helpful in preventing landslides on steep slopes and also help in preventing stream bank erosion. That being said, trees can be a problem when hydroseeding.

Hydroseeders  typically have no problems navigating trees thanks to tactile hoses that can be moved around. The main problem with trees comes from the shade.

As an example, you would not want to grow grass under decking – not only would it be very difficult to cut, but it would never get the sunlight it needs to survive. The same applies to grass under a thick canopy of foliage. We suggest that if your grass is not getting at least 3-4 hours of filtered sunlight it may be a better option to consider a shade-tolerant ground cover.

Using the hose from this Finn T30 should get the job done!

Tips for seed mix

It is best to use seed varieties that cope well in both sun and shade. We always tell people that hydroseed will grow fine in shadier areas, but over time it will thin out if there is not enough sunlight. Areas that stay wet and don’t dry out will start to grow moss that may become more dominant than the grass.

One of the only solutions is to thin out the trees to let more light through. The problems with trees are twofold: challenges with the light and the fact that tree roots compete for nutrients with the grassroots. Often times tree roots will use up the moisture and nutrients that your grass needs.

Rain water issues

Another common issue is that often times raindrops get caught in the canopy of the trees and never make it to the ground. This tends to be an issue with larger, more developed trees. A shaded grass will not photosynthesize like it would if it was in full sun and so nutrients in the ground will likely feed the tree and not your grass. It also can cause problems the other way around – you can easily overfeed a grass in the shade as it can’t utilise the nutrients quickly enough.

During the initial establishment phase, there is a higher risk of erosion under trees. You should use enough tacking agent to keep the hydroseed in place without it washing away – even under the most extreme rainfall. In general, there are no issues with heavy rainfall falling straight onto a hydroseeded area. However, when rain gets collected in a tree canopy the raindrop size changes to much larger drops, causing them to come down with stronger force. This can cause spotty patches and so re-seeding may be needed.

Final thought.

As a general rule, we advise that if you are going to hydroseed under a tree canopy, make sure the grass is getting enough sunlight to survive. Moss is usually a good indicator that there is not enough light. In cases where there is a thick canopy, thin out the trees as much as possible to let more light through. You can also use shade tolerant seed. Most importantly, make sure your grass is getting the right amount of water using rain gauges and do not over fertilize it.

For more advice, we recommend talking to hydroapp in the UK who offer practical advice and training and will be happy to discuss your hydroseeding requirements in further detail.

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