What is a tree grate?

The tree is made to retain water

Image - Wikimedia / CarlosVdeHabsburgo

Both in the streets of our towns and cities, as well as in the gardens, around the trees and palm trees, a tree is practically always made in order to retain the water around the trunk. In this way, the roots can take advantage of it, and the person in charge of watering the plants avoids wasting it.

However, It is very important to know that you have to take certain things into account so that that tree grate is really well done and comply with what is expected of him.

What are the characteristics of a tree grate?

You can make a decorative tree grate in the city

Image - Flickr / Scott Miller

A tree grate, or as it is also known, a bowl, it is a hole made around the trunk of a plant. In some cases, for example in cities and in places where the ground is asphalted or paved in some way, the tree grate is the area that is left untouched around the trunk. On the other hand, in gardens what is done a lot is to pile up earth or stones around, which fulfill the same function.

Which functions has?

In addition to retaining water, it has (or should have) these other functions:

  • Keeps the roots of the plant clean and protected from trampling, and therefore, from the excessive compaction of the earth, something that could prevent them from developing normally.
  • The log can be prevented from cracking the ground, especially if the choice of the species has been adequate considering the characteristics of said soil and the climate of the area.
  • It can be decorative and, at the same time, practical, since if stones are placed around it, for example, the area is made to look more natural. In addition, it is interesting to also place a tree grate, which is made of iron, steel or wood, and in which you can inscribe positive or inspiring phrases or messages, for example. This serves to protect the tree, while allowing people to pass through it.

What types of tree pits are there?

There are two types of tree pits:

Wild tree pits

Are those in which flowers and other small plants are planted around the trunk of the tree or palm tree. This is an extra beautification of the area, at the same time that it contributes to improving the quality of the air you breathe.

Prefabricated tree pits

As their name suggests, they are those that are made by humans. They can be made of iron, concrete, or steel. And they can have different designs: some are rounded, others are rectangular; some have the appearance of a grid, while others have square holes.

How to make a tree grate?

The trees on the sidewalk need a tree grate

On some occasions, the edge of the sidewalk serves as a tree grate.

For a tree to be useful, it is very necessary to plan well which plants are going to be put in the area. Therefore, before talking about it, we are going to give you a few tips to choose the species correctly:

Things to keep in mind when choosing the plant

Find out about its characteristics

There are many types of plants, but it is quite common for them to be planted over and over again, both in gardens and on the streets. And this is not always right, because there are some that grow larger than they should, eventually lifting the ground or even breaking it.

Thus, you must find out how big they will be once they reach adulthood; And I don't just mean the height because this, sometimes, is controlled well with pruning, but rather the width of the trunk. If we want to stop seeing trees and palm trees growing in confined spaces, this research work is essential.

Know the climate of your area and the soil where you want to plant

Experimenting is great, but you have to do it wisely. That is, put a flamboyant In frosty weather, this is not only crazy but it will also waste money and time. And that is not to mention that it is not the best species for a narrow street, since its glass is parasol and quite wide. Thus, To avoid problems, you have to know a little about the climate in your area: maximum and minimum temperatures, when and how much it rains, humidity, wind.

It is not about becoming a meteorologist if you don't want to, but you should keep in mind that depending on the climate some plants or others may grow. And, also, you need to know what type of soil you have: is it clayey? Sandy? Has it been mixed with rubble (which happens in a city) or is it 'pure'? There are certain trees that grow on very poor soils, such as the tipuana tipu or the Acacia, but there are others like the Celtis or the Cercis who want the land to be fertile and well drained.

Things to keep in mind when making a tree grate

Area where the plant is or will be

It is not the same to make a tree box for a tree in a private garden than to make one for a plant in a city. In a garden, this can be made of earth or stones for example, but On a public road, the traffic, both of people and vehicles, that pass through that area must be taken into account.

Thus, in the latter case, the use of tree grate will be highly recommended, since it can be circulated without causing any damage to the plant.

Adult size and current age of the plant

Regardless of how big the tree or palm you are going to plant is now, it is very important that the tree grate is wide. The total width will be greater or less depending on the species once it reaches adulthood. For example, a Phoenix canariensis, which can have a trunk of up to 60 centimeters at the base, must be able to grow without problems with a tree grate with that diameter at least.

It is a mistake, and quite serious because it can lead to the death of the plant, make very small tree pits, and even cover them with concrete almost completely., leaving only a few centimeters between the trunk and said concrete. And the fact is that plants, all without exception, need air as well as water, and this will not reach their roots with a concrete soil.

Tree pits designs in the city

You know what a tree grate is, its function, and how it has to be to make it functional, but ... what if I told you that they can be used to improve cities, giving them a different and more lively touch?

In case you don't believe me, or you are looking for ideas, here is a sample:

Grass

Laying grass can be a good idea

The grass, whether natural or artificial, is beautiful and keeps the roots properly aerated. It tolerates footsteps well, and also beautifies the city. Without a doubt, it is a highly recommended option to put on an avenue or street with palm trees.

Decorative sand and rubber

The use of gravel as a tree grate can decorate the street

Today you find decorative sand of different colors: white, brown, reddish, gray. They also sell rubber sheets, which allow the roots to breathe. They are easy to put on and take off, in case the plant grows more than expected.

Wooden tree pits for the giants

Tree pits can be made of wood

Image - Wikimedia / ChristianeB

If there is a majestic plant in the city, it is worth protecting. There are many ways to do it, but we We recommend using wooden tree grills, as they will give it a much more natural look. Also, if you place a wide plank, at least 35 centimeters long, it will serve as a seat.

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