Spring is one of the best times of the year to plant, but do you know the steps of proper tree planting? This seemingly easy project is actually a quite complicated procedure! The improper planting of a tree can lead to an unhealthy and high maintenance tree, which could become a costly venture.
The Planting Site
Before you shop for your tree, select the planting site for your new tree. It is vital to keep in mind that your tree will need space to grow. Consider any power lines which may interfere with your growing tree’s branches; it is ideal to maintain at least a 15-foot distance from a utility line, after allowing for 20 years of growth.
- Soil Check – Check the soil in the area of the planting site which you have selected. Most trees thrive in a moderate to well-drained site.
- Climate Conditions – Selecting a tree which can thrive in your climate conditions will set you up for success!
Selecting the Proper Tree
Once you have identified the planting site, spacial restrictions and soil and climate type of your area, you are ready to begin tree shopping. We advise that you select a healthy tree from a reputable tree nursery. The staff will be able to assist you in selecting exactly the type of tree for your area, while also explaining how to best care for your new tree!
Proper Tree Planting
More complicated that simply digging a hole and sticking a tree in it, proper tree planting has specific steps and guidelines which should be followed for success. Before you begin, remove any dead or broken branches.
- Digging the Hole – The width of the hole should be at least twice the width of your tree’s root ball. The hole should not be deeper than the root ball. Avoid compacting the soil around your tree’s root ball.
- Backfill Soil – Mix one part peat moss or composted organic material with four parts soil for your backfill soil.
- Mulching is Key – Apply 3-4 inches of mulch over your tree’s root ball, while staying slightly away from the trunk. This helps to keep soil moist while reducing weed growth. Do not apply more than 4 inches of mulch, and keep away from the trunk of the tree. Only brace your tree if it is absolutely necessary.
- Watering Procedure – Water your tree extensively after planting and at least once a week during dry periods. Avoid wetting the leaves of the tree, when watering.
If you come across any issues while planting your tree, feel free to call a professional arborist at Westchester Tree Life; we are happy to assist and answer any questions you may have.
Maintaining your new tree’s health is just as important as proper tree planting procedure. A competent and professional arborist (arborists are specifically trained in tree health and the care and maintenance of trees; this is not true of lawn care professionals) can offer diagnosis and preventative maintenance to keep your trees (new and old) in peak condition!
Call Westchester Tree Life today: (914) 238-0069
(All information cited from the National Arborist Association, now known as the Tree Care Industry Association)