Guide for Planting New Trees
Plan Before, During & After Planting
March 25, 2021
Now that it’s spring and everything is starting to bud, you may be considering adding more bloom to your backyard. Follow this new tree planting guide and familiarize yourself with the tips and tricks to help ensure they thrive.
Plan Your Planting
Unlike a potted plant or annual flower garden, planting a tree is a long-term commitment. This is why it’s important to properly plan for the following:
- Type. Different types of trees prefer different types of climate. This is why you see more palms in warmer areas, cacti in drier areas, and pines in cooler environments. Know which type best fits the growing zone you’re living in.
- Timing. Young trees are more delicate and easily stressed, especially when trying to establish roots. Planting is ideal in the dormant season when conditions aren’t as harsh. Some trees, like those growing in containers, can be planted throughout the growing season with sufficient care.
- Placement. When looking for the right spot to plant, keep the future full-size tree in mind. It may be small and look nice next to your house now, but in 10 or 20 years it may tower over your roof and cause problems later on. Also, be careful not to plant too close to utility lines. This is important to remember when digging around underground lines while planting a tree or when the tree is tall enough to reach the height of upper electric poles.
Steps for Tree Planting
With the right type of tree in the right spot and the right time of year, you may think you’re all set to plant. There’s still some planning that needs to happen during the planting process and after it’s in the ground.
- Dig a shallow, broad planting hole about three times wider than the root ball, but only as deep as the root ball.
Remove the tree from any burlap, container, or basket.
- Inspect container tree root balls for circling roots. Then straighten, cut, or remove them.
- Place the roots at the proper height. If the tree is planted too deep, new roots won’t have enough oxygen for development.
- Have someone view the tree from several directions to confirm it’s straight in the hole.
- Backfill the hole gently, but firmly. Pack soil around the base of the root ball to stabilize it and firmly pack the soil around the rest of the hole to eliminate air pockets that may dry out roots.
- Water the soil periodically while backfilling to also help reduce air pockets.
- Stake the tree if necessary. The plant will develop a stronger trunk and root system if it’s not staked.
- Mulch the base of the tree to help hold moisture, moderate soil temperature, and reduce weeds.
- Make sure you can still see the trunk flare–where the trunk expands at the base of the tree.
- Keep the soil moist, but don’t flood it. Water trees at least once a week, unless it rains, and more frequently during hot, windy weather.
When you properly plan to plant new trees, you’re setting it up for a healthy start and bright future. Trees that can mature to their full size without any obstacles (like structures and stress) in the way provide you, your yard, and the environment many benefits Of throughout your lifetime. If you still have questions after reviewing this new tree planting guide, contact Cardinal Lawns for more information.
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