A step-by-step guide to tree planting – learn how to transform your backyard into a lush paradise
Planting a tree is more complex than digging a hole and placing the sapling in the ground. It requires careful consideration of several factors, such as site evaluation, plant selection, site preparation, and setting the plant. This article is a step-by-step guide to successful tree planting.
Step 1: Thoroughly Evaluate The Site
It is essential to evaluate the site to ensure successful tree growth. The following factors must be taken into account during the assessment:
- The slope of the land
- Soil Type
- Exposure to sunlight
- Level of soil compaction
- Drainage conditions
- Available space or size
- Soil pH and nutrient availability
Step 2: Selection of the Plant
- Once the site has been evaluated, choosing plant materials that can thrive in that specific location is crucial. It is essential to consider the plant’s nutrient requirements, growth habits, maintenance needs, pest resistance, and potential invasiveness. The most suitable plant for a given location should be chosen regardless of its origin. In some cases, non-native plants may perform better than native ones, particularly in urban or suburban landscapes where the microclimate has been altered due to various factors, such as building placement, pavement, soil compaction, and traffic.
It is essential not to choose plant material solely based on their native status. Instead, select plants that are not invasive, have no significant pest problems, are drought-tolerant, have extended seasonal appeal, and can thrive in the chosen site. It is essential to match the plant’s needs to the site and choose the right plant for the right location while considering existing plant communities.
Step 3: Preparation of the Site
- One of the most common mistakes in tree planting is incorrect planting depth, which can be either too deep or too high, and both can cause significant problems. Planting holes that are dug too deep can result in the trunk flare and structural roots being buried too deeply, causing the plant to settle and decline over time. To ensure that trees and shrubs are planted at the correct depth, the depth of the root ball should be no more profound than the root ball’s height as measured from the trunk flare to the bottom of the root ball. To determine the correct planting depth, locate where the trunk flare begins.
Measuring the height from the trunk flare to the bottom of the root ball will provide the correct planting hole depth. If the trunk flare is not well-developed, the root ball can be probed for structural roots using a surveyor’s chaining pin or a similar tool. Research has shown that most woody ornamentals’ fibrous or absorbing roots are typically found within the top 6 to 12 inches of soil, and root development can extend beyond the canopy or dripline.
Step 4: Tree Plantation
- When placing the plant in the hole, keep the rootball intact and prevent the roots from drying out. Carefully place the rootball in the hole so that the trunk flare is above the existing grade by 1-2 inches. After placing the plant in the hole, remove all non-biodegradable materials, such as rope, twine, burlap, and plastic. Ensure that no protruding points of wire are left, as they could cause injury to people or pets.
If you need more information about tree planting or require professional services, contact American Tree Experts Inc today. We are a professional tree pruning and nutrient management company. Call us at 973-774-6091 and get all the help you need to ensure the success of your tree planting project.