Buried Alive: Properly Plant a Tree

Homeowners spend hundreds of dollars each year on new trees which eventually die because they were planted too deeply. Proper planting is essential for the failure or success of a young tree. Don’t waste your money this year: Follow these planting guidelines:

•Measure the height and diameter of the root ball or root spread

•Dig the hole 1-3″ shallower than the root ball or root depth. The hole’s diameter should be 2 to 3 times the diameter of the root ball or root spread.

•Carefully loosen the roots, so that they may spread when planted.

•The tree should be planted so that the root flare, the base of the tree trunk where the roots begin to “flare out”, is visible and above ground.

•Backfill with soil from the planting hole, using water to pack or settle the soil around the root ball.

•Mulch the planting area with 2-4″ of an organic mulch such as wood chips. Start the mulch 6″ away from the tree trunk. Do not mulch up or against the trunk.

•Stake and/or protect the trunk of the tree. Make sure to remove the guy wires when the staking is no longer needed or the tree could be injured or even killed from girdling by the wire

If you are interested in planting a new tree this season, feel free to contact K.C. Arborist. Our certified arborists can select a beautiful tree specific to your landscaping needs. See the featured article “Arbor Day Special” for more information.