Tips and Techniques for Planting Trees

Instructions for Containerized Trees

If a tree is planted correctly, it will grow twice as fast and live at least twice as long as one that is incorrectly planted. Ideally, dig or rototill an area one foot deep and approximately five times the diameter of the root ball. The prepared soil will encourage root growth beyond the root ball and results in a healthier tree. In transplanting trees, be sure to keep soil around the roots. Help prevent root girdling by vertically cutting any roots that show tendencies to circle the root ball. After placing the tree, pack the soil firmly, but not tightly around the root ball. Water the soil and place a three foot protective circle of mulch around the tree.

Instructions for Bare Root Seedlings

Unpack the tree and soak in water for three to six hours. Dig a hole wide and deep enough so that the roots will not be crowded. To promote root growth, turn the soil in an area up to three feet in diameter. Fill the excavation area with soil packing the area lightly. Newly planted trees need plenty of water. After a thorough watering at the base of the tree, place a 2 inch layer of mulch around the base. During dry weather, water the tree generously every week or ten days during the first year of growth.