Planting your new tree or shrub is very easy. Just follow these simple guidelines.
Water the tree or shrub well before planting, if it is in a container. This will help to minimize shock while planting.
Dig a hole just as deep as where it sits in the pot, or, in the case of something in a burlap root ball, just as deep as to the top of the burlap. No deeper! It is best to plant a little too high than even a little too low. In very wet areas or heavy clay soils plant high and mound the soil up to the level of the top of the roots.
Gently remove the plant from the pot, or, if in a ball, leave the burlap and wire basket right in place. We’ll get to that later.
Using most of the soil you removed, fill the hole back up with the soil, taking care to pack the soil in well, but not too hard, eliminating any air pockets. Stop a couple of inches from the top. In heavy clay soils remove all the soil, and use a good quality topsoil.
If the plant has a rootball, remove any string around the top of the plant at this time. Leave the wire basket in place, the roots will grow right through it. Cut away the top of the burlap so none will stick above the ground. The top hoops may be folded down or cut.
Fill the hole with water. This helps to wet the surrounding soil, and to settle the soil in place.
When the water is gone, fill the hole the rest of the way with soil, and make a saucer of soil to form a catch basin for water. Cover with 3” of bark mulch, keeping mulch away from the stem of the tree or shrub.
Caring for Your Plants The more care you give your plant the first year of planting, the better it will thrive the rest of it’s life.
Here are some guidelines:
With few exceptions, trees will need to be staked. Use 3 stakes about 3-4’ out from the tree, and use wire from the stake to the tree. Protect the trunk with old hose around the wire. Leave the stakes on for one year, and keep them tight.
Using bark mulch keeps weeds from competing with your plant, and also keeps the soil moist so the plant can establish itself better.
Water daily the first week, or more in hot weather. Water once a week after that. In clay soils, you may need to check before watering, it may still be wet, while sandy soils may need more frequent watering all summer. Stop after the leaves fall , or in November for evergreens.
When you do water, soak thoroughly. It’s better to water well, less often, than frequently with small amounts.
Fertilize the next year early in the spring. Ask us for recommendations.
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