We love trees! Trees add beauty and colour to the landscape. They also provide shade and shelter for creatures of all sizes. Moreover, they clean the air, and help alleviate soil erosion. Fall, with its mild temperatures, is a good time to plant trees, small shrubs and perennials.
Whether you want a deciduous or coniferous tree, choose one that is suitable for your region and climate zone. Native trees are adapted to thrive without much care. Don’t forget to consider the maturation size of the tree. Choose a spot in your garden that will give your tree plenty of room to grow both horizontally and vertically. To ensure that the tree will thrive and survive, try to choose an area without other plants and trees nearby, so that it doesn’t have to compete for water, sunlight and nutrients.
Planting a tree is easier than you think. Once you have bought your tree home from the garden center or nursery, plant it as soon as possible. Do not let the roots dry out. Remember, if they dry, they will die! And most importantly, handle tree carefully. Always lift tree by the root ball.
Here’s a step-by-step guide on how to plant a tree:
- Before digging, it is important to check with utility companies for underground pipelines and cables.
- Once the location has been confirmed to be safe, use a shovel to dig a hole that is 4-5 times the diameter of the root ball, which will give the roots enough space to grow.
- Remove any attached wires, cords or plastic. If planting a tree with roots wrapped in burlap, remove as much of the fabric as possible. If the roots are compacted, gently untangle them, before lowering the tree into the hole.
- Carefully set the tree into the hole. Backfill with good soil. Do not bury over the crown (where the stem changes to root) or leave any roots exposed. Do not compact the soil too much.
- Most trees will require moist, fertile soil to thrive, especially fruit trees. Add compost or well composted manure to amend soil, if necessary.
- Stake the tree if necessary. If you are not sure, consult a gardening expert.
- Water thoroughly and often. Try not to let the roots dry out. Water tree weekly during the first year. A deep soaking of water is needed.
- Mulching with wood chips or pine bark, is recommended for new trees. A 2-3 inch layer of mulch will help the soil remain moist and cool. Try not to let the mulch touch the trunk.
- Do not fertilize the tree during the first year. Too much nitrogen will burn the tender roots and slow its growth.
- All done! Congratulations, you have just planted a tree and made the world a cleaner and healthier place to live!
- How To Plant Bare-Rooted Fruit Trees (aladude.wordpress.com)