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PostPosted: Wed Jun 13, 2018 2:54 am 
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Need some advise on what to do about ground cover on a home I just purchased. The house faces north with 2 trees in the sloped front yard. (Appear to be red oaks, although I don't know why the one on the left has such pale leaf color). Houses are very close together. I have a 2 story to my left (east). Needless to say I don't get much sunlight. I don't if the HOA will let me remove either tree, going to check. If they don't, I need a solution. Previous owner patched in some St Augustine, but I don't think there's even enough sunlight for that. I've seen some posts about Shadow Turf, would it work? Not opposed to ground cover. I like the ivy in my flower beds. Idea's? I've included pics via url. Included a pic of the ivy in the flower bed. If you can identify, please do.

https://www.dropbox.com/sh/7nr4q42y4haaj3n/AADdKrYY23ItvSiaYzKalXhNa?dl=0


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PostPosted: Thu Jun 14, 2018 8:22 am 
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Location: Fort Worth,TEXAS
I'm having a similar quandary right now, and I created the shade myself by planting several types of trees and shrubs in my front yard. I want to keep the trees (and I hope you do too - in addition to shade they also add value to your home) so will probably put in a mix of Asian jasmine and mulch. I'd think twice about even keeping the ivy; it looks interesting where it is right now but it will climb the house, harming the mortar, and it will climb the trees, not doing them any good either.

Good move adding the photos via dropbox link; sometimes it's difficult to share photos in threads here on dirtdoctor.com because the sizes have to be much smaller than typical photos these days.

The difference in colors probably means the builder didn't match the tree varieties very carefully.

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PostPosted: Sat Jun 16, 2018 3:16 pm 
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Thanks for the response. I'd hoped to use one of one of the ground covers Howard recommends, however I checked with the HOA rules, and ground cover can't be used for more than 10% of the total area. I'm going to mulch around the trees as much as possible after removing the ring of Saint Augustine the previous owner circled it with.

I'd rather not use SA and other ideas?


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PostPosted: Sun Jun 17, 2018 10:23 am 
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Homeowners Associations are tyrannical and usually intolerant about difference between yards. They are put in place by the builders because they can collect fees and use that money to put in landscaping, walls, perhaps a public pool area, and once the neighborhood is built out 80% they turn management over to a for-profit company in the business of running homeowners associations. The fear is that if someone's house or yard has a unique appearance, their home values might be downwardly affected. Personally I would never live somewhere that has a mandatory HA in the builder's covenants. /rant off

I've considered writing a book, with lots of photos of subversive gardening that can be done in neighborhood held hostage by homeowners association.

Grass doesn't grow well in deep shade; the HA probably wants the trees to stay in place, so they have to let you choose - either cut down the trees so you can grow grass, or let you plant something that will survive in the shady area. Can you mix clover in with whatever is growing there now? It's healthier for the grass that is there to have the nitrogen-fixing clover in the mix, and clover can be mowed just fine. Check to see if any of them are more shade tolerant and keep it a low-growing variety.

I'm afraid this isn't much help, I really detest homeowners associations. I'd be out there butting heads with them. (When my children were small one of our favorite books was Daniel Pinkwater's The Big Orange Splot)

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