Hello all: I was hoping you could give me some advice to help me solve an on-going problem.
In front of my house (to the northeast) there is a small aging red maple which gives light shade and plenty of fall color. You can see it here in the fall from the east, and in the summer from the north. There are some perennials planted under the tree.
My problem is this: the tree probably has no more than five years left before it has to be taken down, and I want to start thinking about how to replace it now. I will probably want to plant another red maple when the old one dies, since we like the traditional look of it in the fall (isn’t it charming?). But should I plant a young maple beneath it, to the left of the tree perhaps, to get a head-start?
Also, I’ve been thinking of trying to relieve the tall tree-short perennial look with a shrub or very small tree planted as a companion to the maple. Any suggestions? it should have a fairly easy habit and bloom on new wood (if at all) since the area can get hammered by the snow from the road. Also it is quite shady, though bright shade. I am zone 4b. Any help is appreciated!
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Welcome! I’m Margaret Roach, a leading garden writer for 25 years—at ‘Martha Stewart Living,’ ‘Newsday,’ and in three books. I host a public-radio podcast; I also lecture, plus hold tours at my 2.3-acre Hudson Valley (NY) Zone 5B garden, and always say no to chemicals and yes to great plants.