Proper Tree Planting Tips

Make a Plan for Healthy Plants


Just as the leaves are about to fall, you may want to think about planting a tree. Generally, the best time to plant is early spring or late fall, but it really depends on what type of tree you want. No matter what type or time of year, here are some proper tree planting tips to follow.

Proper Tree Planting Plan

Before you even break ground for a new tree, plan on where it’s going to go. Think about how large the tree will get when it’s fully grown, and make sure you don’t plant it too close to structures or power lines. Plant shady trees on the south side of the house for the best shade in summer and warmth in winter. Placement means a lot for the future health of the tree and amount of maintenance for you.

Proper Tree Planting Hole

Even the hole your tree root ball will fit into needs proper planning. Consider the soil and how well your lawn drains. This will determine how much water your tree roots will get. Different types of trees require certain types of soil and do best in various drainage conditions.

The hole you dig for your tree should be about two to three times wider than the root ball, and shallow to accommodate spreading roots. It shouldn’t be deeper than the depth of a root ball. The more room is has to spread out, the better. So make sure the soil is loose around the area and free of grass.

Basic Tree Planting Steps

After you have a tree and a spot, get ready to plant.

1. Unpot the Tree. Act fast so the roots don’t dry out. But be careful that the roots don’t break. If your tree arrives wrapped in treated material, get as much of the wrapping off as possible. If it’s in an untreated burlap container, that can be planted with the tree if needed.

2. Backfill around the root ball with dirt, lightly packing the soil as you go. Make sure the trunk stays straight throughout this process.

3. Secure a newly planted tree with stakes. Drive two or three stakes into the ground underneath and through the root ball. Loosely tie the stakes to the trunk.

4. Water the tree right after planting and every following day for several weeks. By then, the roots will start to spread into the surrounding soil, and you can start to reduce the frequency of watering.

5. Wait until the following year to start fertilizing. A layer of mulch around the base of the tree will keep weeds out and reduce water loss.

6. Only prune newly planted trees if any branches are broken, dead, or diseased. Otherwise, leave them alone until after the first growing season.

If you still have questions about a certain type of tree or what may grow best in your yard, contact Elite Tree Care for more information.

Tree Planting Guide

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