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Planting under the trampoline

(25 Posts)
LifeIsGoodish Fri 06-May-16 08:19:31

I want to plant under the trampoline, but there's no way I can dig over in that space. The trampoline cannot be moved.

Although the grass is dead under there, the ground is no doubt still matted with roots. The topsoil is really thin, about a 6" layer on top of clay, stones, and builder's rubble. Hell to dig!

If I just break up the surface a bit and mulch with rotted manure, will the earthworms incorporate it like they do on beds?

shovetheholly Fri 06-May-16 08:35:50

This sounds like a really, really challenging space to plant. It's going to be really dry and really dark. You'll need some very specialist plants to survive those conditions. Even tough-as-old-boots stuff like alchemilla mollis and vinca may not be happy sad. I would start by trying one or two things and see if they work, rather than spending a lot of money on plants that may all die.

You are going to need to break up at least some of the compacted ground to give things a fighting chance. A mattock may be your best bet, then loads of organic matter (manure, compost, perhaps a bit of grit).

CuttedUpPear Fri 06-May-16 08:40:39

Nothing will grow. That's why there is nothing growing now.
It's like trying to grow something in a dark box.

Believeitornot Fri 06-May-16 08:42:05

Nothing will grow - why bother? Put some artificial grass underneath and once you've ditched the trampoline in years to come, then tackle it.

NicknameUsed Fri 06-May-16 08:44:42

Don't bother.

LifeIsGoodish Fri 06-May-16 08:53:27

No room to swing a mattock!

I suggested a piece of astroturf to dh, but he doesn't like the idea.

I don't think it's all that dry underneath the tramp. The bounce mat is a dense net, so rain goes through it. Besides, the same weeds as grow in the beds are colonising the area where the grass has died!

Thistledew Fri 06-May-16 09:11:39

You could try ferns, but you would probably have to water them regularly. They don't need much depth to plant in, so spreading a thick layer of compost first may do the trick. Ferns tend to be either shade tolerant or drought tolerant. A few cope reasonably well with both but you are better off committing to a regular watering regime and going for shade tolerant varieties.

Deux Fri 06-May-16 09:15:13

I've seen some great fake grass that has daisies in it. I'd be tempted to go with something like that.

Palomb Fri 06-May-16 09:17:32

I think Astro turf is a really good idea as you'd really struggle to get anything to grow there.

LyndaNotLinda Fri 06-May-16 09:20:07

I had a beautiful (small) lawn. Then I put a trampoline on it. Now it's dry earth underneath

Thistledew Fri 06-May-16 09:23:12

To make the watering easier you could add one of those 'leaky' pipes as you plant, so you would only need to connect it to the tap for a couple of hours a few times a week.

prettywhiteguitar Fri 06-May-16 12:01:56

Could you try and plant near the edge ? Where it might be more like partial shade ? Low growing fern or grasses

CuttedUpPear Sun 08-May-16 22:53:40

I can't understand how you think you are going to plant underneath it if you aren't able to even move it in order to break up the soil.

It's a crazy idea anyway. Get AstroTurf like lots of people have suggested.

DoreenLethal Sun 08-May-16 23:01:36

What are you hoping to achieve by this?

LifeIsGoodish Mon 09-May-16 01:18:00

Doreen:

Something more attractive than a brown, weed-infested patch,

That will suit my jungle garden (AstroTurf will look gaudy and weird),

And wildlife-friendly (blackbirds currently forage underneath it).

DoreenLethal Mon 09-May-16 07:38:51

Ok, I am not being funny, but weeds thrive in bad patches, precisely because they have adapted to thrive in bad patches.

Putting anything else down just isn't going to survive.

I personally wouldn't put down anything that is going to attract bees, near to bouncing children. And most plants will attract bees at some point.

shovetheholly Mon 09-May-16 08:55:21

If the ground is getting dry and the grass is dying, there is not enough sun and water under there for many plants. However, you sound determined, and I'm never one to knock someone who is up for a real challenge - as long as you realise it's going to be really, really difficult to keep stuff under there alive and it's a bit of a crazy idea really grin The light levels alone are going to be a real issue.

You can't do much about the darkness while the trampoline is in situ, but you can water underneath it more regularly, which may help. You could then look at some of the plants that grow in really shady, dry areas. Sedums are normally associated with sun-baked rocky outcrops, but there are specialist varieties that will grow in shade. Alchemilla, too, as I said before. Native wood grasses might also be OK.

LyndaNotLinda Mon 09-May-16 09:08:59

I tell you what survives under mine - spanish bluebells. So you could plant those I guess.

LifeIsGoodish Mon 09-May-16 16:01:25

wink yeah, bloody-mindedly bonkers.

Lynda I have been considering transplanting some of my bluebells, which thrive in 100% shade under the trees at the bottom of my garden. Oddly enough, nobody else has ever mentioned them!

LifeIsGoodish Mon 09-May-16 16:02:29

I'll try the other plants you mentioned, too, shovetheholly.

mumsnit Mon 09-May-16 20:20:41

I use 'under the trampoline' space as a dumping ground for soil and couch grass that I've dug out of the garden. I noticed yesterday that loads of Crocosmia were sprouting up underneath as I must've dug up some of the bulbs so they'll grow!!!

Any plants underneath the middle will get squished by bouncing (that's if your trampoline still gets used hmm - mine is hopefully in its final year then I can put my veg beds in the space at last grin)

LetThereBeCupcakes Mon 09-May-16 20:36:06

If you want to help wildlife, how about a log pile in the centre? Though you'd have to be careful the trampoline doesn't go to far down when bounced on. That could be painful...

LetThereBeCupcakes Mon 09-May-16 20:46:28

Ah just seen the above post, didn't realise how far down they go!! Don't do a logpile.

If it's about making it look nicer, what about digging the trampoline in? Seems quite popular these days. Goodness knows what you'd do with that much soil though!

Wistfulthinking Tue 10-May-16 12:51:30

We have rampant and very well established ivy under ours- not by choice or with any encouragement! We also have clay soil.

LyndaNotLinda Tue 10-May-16 17:38:11

I should have added that they survive but they don't flower! You could affix daylight lamps to the springs perhaps wink

Good luck. Report back!

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