How to Plant a Tree

March 14, 2013 | posted in: Tips & Tricks | by
  • Hole – Dig a hole twice as large as the pot and deep enough so that the top of the pot is level with the ground.
  • Soil – Keep the existing soil and mix it with good black earth or potting soil for the backfill.
  • Fertilizer – Adding bone meal, mycorrhizal fungi or other tree planting products is a good idea but not essential. You will get better results by applying a slow-release granular fertilizer in the spring. Never fertilize in the fall.
  • Backfill – Thoroughly soak the bottom of the hole, then seat the tree and fill the hole with your backfill soil, compressing gently but firmly. Add some soil over the backfill, ringing the trunk with a doughnut shape the diameter of the pot.
  • Stake – Plant a solid metal stake to support the tree. This very important step will stabilize the tree’s root system and allow it to properly establish itself. Be sure to use a wide plastic tree tie to prevent bark damage. Leave the stake in place two winters before removing it.
  • Watering – Water the tree generously. A tree planted in the fall or early spring will benefit from all of the water brought by snowmelt and spring showers.  However, don’t neglect watering your tree in its first summer, particularly during heatwaves and long droughts.
  • Pruning – The following spring, prune the longest branches to promote new growth and ensure that your tree thrives.
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