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Lawn in a shady back yard - possible?

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Lawn in a shady back yard - possible?

Postby yorkgardner » Mar 12, 2011 6:50 pm

Hi,

I just moved into a new house. When my daughter was born, I realized that the wood chips covering the back yard were no longer suitable. Grass would be a lot more fun!

But - the back yard faces north, and has four Manitoba Maples that keep yard shady for most hours of the day. Their foliage covers just about the entire back yard.

I read about lawns in shady areas, and it seems possible with certain types of grass, but I'm worried that the amount of light my yard gets is too little for even the hardiest of fiscues.

Some sites seem to suggest that at some point, too much shade means grass is not feasible. I'm worried that the wood chips are in the yard because someone had already reached that conclusion...

Thanks,
Yorkgardner
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Re: Lawn in a shady back yard - possible?

Postby Eeyore » Mar 12, 2011 8:42 pm

You'll also have problems with the trees sucking up moisture. There are other options such as

http://www.nextag.com/Bounce-Back-Playg ... F9817C0244
Lyn
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Re: Lawn in a shady back yard - possible?

Postby B_BQ » Mar 12, 2011 8:47 pm

If it were my space I would get rid of at least three of the Manitoba maples!!!! :lol: Horrible rubbish trees IMO.

Having said that t is possible to have a lawn in a north-facing spot. There are now many varieties of grass seed available which are supposed to grow quite well in shade.

~BBQ
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South/Central Ontario

Every day may not be good, but there's something good in every day
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Re: Lawn in a shady back yard - possible?

Postby Eeyore » Mar 12, 2011 8:50 pm

I have to say I agree with Brenda about the trees ...... :? :?
Lyn
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“Those who say it can't be done are usually interrupted by others doing it.” ` James Arthur Baldwin"
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Re: Lawn in a shady back yard - possible?

Postby yorkgardner » Mar 12, 2011 9:17 pm

Any idea which grass varieties to try?

Also, what's so bad about Manitoba Maples?
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Re: Lawn in a shady back yard - possible?

Postby B_BQ » Mar 12, 2011 9:28 pm

Manitoba Maples - fast growing, messy, send lots of 'keys' everywhere, which take root easily, massive root system taking moisture from the ground, gets damaged by ice and wind, making more mess.
It's not all bad though, it just depends where it is growing. I personally don't think it belongs in a regular yard. It's OK in the prairies for example, where it has lots of space, and can provide a quick windbreak, but it is comparatively short-lived.
Anyone else want to jump in re the pros and cons of Manitoba Maples? :roll:
~BBQ
Zone 5b
South/Central Ontario

Every day may not be good, but there's something good in every day
~ Author Unknown
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Re: Lawn in a shady back yard - possible?

Postby Eeyore » Mar 12, 2011 10:58 pm

I think you just about covered it Brenda. They are a very nice looking tree so if you can get a male that doesn't produce keys.... We had one in our back yard for years and we were forever getting rid of suckers. It's been gone for 10 years now and I'm still finding the darn things growing here and there!
Lyn
AB, Zone 3A
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“Those who say it can't be done are usually interrupted by others doing it.” ` James Arthur Baldwin"
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Re: Lawn in a shady back yard - possible?

Postby Countryboy » Mar 13, 2011 11:48 am

Manitoba Maple are not welcome anywhere I can get my hands on them. They are a wet, stringy soft hardwood that splits and breaks easily. Very gnarly looking trees, and the wood is pretty hard to burn. Trim off a branch and u'll get strong new growth . . sorta like a Chia Pet.

But even tho they're not my favourite tree, in your case I would maybe keep one or two . . just for shade . . and eliminate the ones that shade the area that u want to sow with grass seed.

I've tried seeding areas of solid shade and found nothing that works. :(
Adopt the pace of nature, her secret is patience.
.....Ralph Waldo Emmerson....

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Re: Lawn in a shady back yard - possible?

Postby yorkgardner » Mar 13, 2011 10:23 pm

Right...looks like this one is beyond my virtually non-existent gardening skill set.

Thanks, everyone, for the excellent answers and feedback!

--Yorkgardner
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Re: Lawn in a shady back yard - possible?

Postby Eeyore » Mar 13, 2011 10:52 pm

Ha! Ha! Stay in touch and let us know what you decide.
Lyn
AB, Zone 3A
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“Those who say it can't be done are usually interrupted by others doing it.” ` James Arthur Baldwin"
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