Fall into winter is the prime time to plant trees. Most trees are going dormant right now and take transplanting well this time of year. With no competition for top growth, the roots have a chance to get established prior to our warm springs and summers.
When planting a tree, you want to dig the hole twice as wide as the root ball (or container) and just as deep. Digger deeper may cause the tree to settle lower into the hole than wanted. Trees planted too deep have a chance of suffocating and getting root rot. Our ‘native’ soil can be a bit on the heavy side. We recommend adding some organic material to this native soil.
Items such as Black Kow, garden soil, or planting soils will work well. Use a ratio of 2/3’s native soil 1/3 new soil… A soil too rich can hold too much water or create a bowl affect in the planting hole leading to saturation and root rot. Finally, use a root stimulator to start feeding your tree. It focuses the nutrients to the root zone where they are needed most during the first couple of months.
The last things to consider are mulching and staking. Mulching not only dresses up your planting, it will also help retain moisture and moderate temperatures… During the hottest part of our summers, having your tree mulched will aid in proper watering. Staking your tree is optional. If your tree is top heavy and has a tendency to lean, then you will want to stake it. The general rules with staking are, no longer than 1-2 years and not rigid staking. The trees roots will become stronger if the tree is able to sway a bit in the wind.
Now is the time to plant!