The two main focuses when fishing a laydown are selecting the right baits for the job and approaching the cover from the right direction. If you do those two things, you’ve got 75% of it whooped. Then we get into the subtleties. Don’t cast over or through part of the cover without fishing it first. The odds aren’t in your favor when it comes to landing a fish in a laydown, so you need to make every effort to shift those odds.
You can do so by taking the right angles, using the right baits and gear. Pay close attention. Don’t let a fish bite your bait and go 3 feet deeper into the cover before you react. Instead, try to get the fish started out before it has time to react. And try to minimize your hang-ups by developing a feel for the bait. If you pay close attention, you’ll notice the way your bait feels as its about to hang up and you can avoid a lot of mishaps. But the only way to develop that feel is, unfortunately, by hanging up a lot to start with.
Don’t get discouraged. Work on your craft. Trees are one of the most common, if not the most common pieces of cover from fishery to fishery. Learning how to set them apart and how to fish each subset will give you a great starting point no matter where you go fishing.