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Tips on How to Plant Trees & Shrubs

It is finally time to plant your new tree or shrub. We know you are excited so follow these few steps to ensure your new favorite plant is the happiest and healthiest it can be!

  1. Verify the Right Location: Confirm that the plant will get the correct amount of light, water, and growth needed in the location you have chosen.  Make sure it has enough room to grow to its full size without interference from buildings, other plants, or overhead wires.

  2. Prepare the Soil: Dig a hole that is two to three times wider than the root ball but no deeper than the root ball's height. Break up any compacted soil in the bottom of the hole to encourage root growth.

  3. Remove Packaging and Examine the Roots: If your tree or shrub is in a container, gently remove it, being careful not to damage the main roots. If the roots are circling around the root ball, gently tease them out to encourage outward growth. Give them what we like to call "a messy hair day." If roots are so compacted you barely see any dirt between the root system feel free to loosen roots with a box cutter scoring the bottom of the roots with an ex and loosening them from there.

  4. Place the Plant in the Hole: Position the tree or shrub in the center of the hole, making sure it's standing straight. The top of the root ball should be level with the surrounding soil surface.

  5. Backfill the Hole: Combine compost, manure, or fresh topsoil with the native soil you excavated from the site in a 1:1 ratio to create an ideal planting mixture. Fill in the hole, gently tamping it down as you go to remove any air pockets. Water the soil periodically as you backfill to help settle it around the roots.

  6. Mulch: Apply a layer of organic mulch, such as wood chips or shredded bark, around the base of the tree or shrub. Make sure the mulch is spread evenly and does not touch the trunk or stems. Mulch helps retain moisture, suppresses weeds, and regulates soil temperature.

  7. Watering: Give your newly planted tree or shrub a deep watering immediately after planting to help settle the soil and ensure that the roots make good contact with the surrounding soil. Afterward, water regularly, especially during dry periods, to keep the soil consistently moist but not waterlogged. Trees and shrubs need at least 1 inch of water per week while getting established.

  8. Monitor and Maintain: Keep an eye on your newly planted tree or shrub for signs of stress, such as wilting or yellowing leaves. Continue to water and care for it as needed, and be patient as it establishes itself in its new environment.

We hope that these tips help you plant with ease! Have other questions? Let us know!

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