How To Plant TreesWhile planting different types of trees differs in the details, all trees eventually end up in a hole. But not any old hole will do.
The most common mistake when planting a tree is a digging hole, which is both too deep and too narrow. Too deep and the roots don’t have access to sufficient oxygen to ensure proper growth. Too narrow and the root structure can’t expand sufficiently to nourish and properly anchor the tree.
As a general rule, trees should be transplanted no deeper than the soil in which they were originally grown. The width of the hole should be at least 3 times the diameter of the root ball or container or the spread of the roots in the case of bare root trees. This will provide the tree with enough worked earth for its root structure to establish itself.
When digging in poorly drained clay soil, it is important to avoid ‘glazing’. Glazing occurs when the sides and bottom of a hole become smoothed forming a barrier, through which water has difficulty passing. To break up the glaze, use a fork to work the bottom and drag the points along the sides of the completed hole. Also, raising the bottom of the hole slightly higher than the surrounding area. This allows water to disperse, reducing the possibility of water pooling in the planting zone.
Fairview Gardens Staff is available for free in house consultations to help you make the perfect selection for your yard and garden. Just call ahead and reserve your time.
Fairview Gardens Tree and Shrub GauranteeShrubs and Trees are guaranteed at 50% of the purchase price within 1 year of the purchase date. Guarantee void if plant isn’t given proper care and watering. Upon presentation of a cash register receipt, the customer may receive store credit or exchange the item for other merchandise in the store.
(MC or Visa charge slips do not qualify as cash register receipts.)
* 2 year warranty is available with a purchase of one bag of Fairview Gardens Compost per shrub and tree purchased.
Pruning is a horticultural practice that alters the form and growth of a plant. Based on aesthetics and science, pruning can also be considered preventive maintenance. Many problems may be prevented by pruning correctly during formative years for a tree or shrub.
Avoid topping trees. Removing large branches leaves stubs that can cause several health problems. It also destroys the plant’s natural shape and promotes suckering and development of weak branch structure.
Appearance in the landscape is essential to a plant’s usefulness. For most landscapes, a plant’s natural form is best. Avoid shearing shrubs into tight geometrical forms that can adversely affect flowering. Alter a plant’s natural form only if it needs to be confined or trained for a specific purpose. When plants are pruned well, it is difficult to see that they have been pruned! Prune to:
Pruning is really the best preventive maintenance a young plant can receive. It is critical for young trees to be trained to encourage them to develop a strong structure. (See Figure 1 on page 2)
Too many young trees are pruned improperly or not pruned at all for several years. By then it may become a major operation to remove bigger branches, and trees may become deformed.
At planting, remove only diseased, dead, or broken branches. Begin training a plant during the dormant season following planting.
Pruning young shrubs is not as critical as pruning young trees, but take care to use the same principles to encourage good branch structure.
Leave the pruning of large trees to qualified tree care professionals who have the proper equipment. Consider the natural form of large trees whenever possible. Most hardwood trees have rounded crowns that lack a strong leader, and such trees may have many lateral branches.
The three most common types of tree pruning are:
The late dormant season is best for most pruning. Pruning in late winter, just before spring growth starts, leaves fresh wounds exposed for only a short length of time before new growth begins the wound sealing process. Another advantage of dormant pruning is that it’s easier to make pruning decisions without leaves obscuring plant branch structure. Pruning at the proper time can avoid certain disease and physiological problems:
Pruning at the proper time can avoid certain disease and physiological problems:
Trees and shrubs that bloom early in the growing season on last year’s growth should be pruned immediately after they finish blooming:
|chokecherry||forsythia||early blooming spirea|
Shrubs grown primarily for their foliage rather than showy flowers should be pruned in spring, before growth begins:
|alpine currant||dogwood||purpleleaf sandcherry|
Shrubs that bloom on new growth may be pruned in spring before growth begins. Plants with marginally hardy stems such as clematis and shrub roses should be pruned back to live wood. Hardier shrubs such as late blooming spireas and smooth (snowball) hydrangeas should be pruned to the first pair of buds above the ground.
After the initial pruning at planting, hedges need to be pruned often. Once the hedge reaches the desired height, prune new growth back whenever it grows another 6 to 8 inches. Prune to within 2 inches of the last pruning. Hedges may be pruned twice a year, in spring and again in mid-summer, to keep them dense and attractive. Prune hedges so they’re wider at the base than at the top, to allow all parts to receive sunlight and prevent legginess.
Every year remove up to one-third of the oldest, thickest stems or trunks, taking them right down to the ground. This will encourage the growth of new stems from the roots. Once there are no longer any thick, overgrown trunks left, switch to standard pruning as needed.
With few exceptions, evergreens (conifers) require little pruning. Different types of evergreens should be pruned according to their varied growth habits.
Pines seldom need pruning, but if you want to promote more dense growth, remove up to two-thirds of the length of newly expanded candles. Don’t prune further back than the current year’s growth.
The right tools make pruning easier and help you do a good job. Keeping tools well-maintained and sharp will improve their performance. There are many tools for pruning, but the following will probably suffice for most applications: