Care Of Your Newly Transplanted Trees
Watering – First Week
Trees should be watered as soon as they are in the ground. Run a garden hose for several hours, on the surface near your tree, at a rate where the water penetrates the soil rather than allowing runoff. Be certain that the tree receives a thorough deep root soaking. This not only hydrates the roots, but also helps settle the tree in its new location, forcing out air pockets in the soil. Do this two or three times the first week after planting. Watch for areas around the edge of the root ball where soil may settle. Fill with surrounding soil, or add soil if needed, and tamp lightly into place.
Watering – First Growing Season
During the first growing season trees should be watered about once a week. Run a garden hose on the surface near your tree, at a slow rate, for about half an hour . This helps the water penetrate the soil, rather than allowing runoff. Regular deep soakings are better than frequent light waterings, but care should be taken not to over water, as this may result in oxygen deprivation. Letting the soil dry slightly between waterings allows the roots adequate oxygen, which must be present in the soil for the roots to survive and grow. If you are uncertain as to whether a tree needs watering, dig down 6-8 inches at the edge of the planting hole. If the soil at that depth feels powdery or crumbly, the tree needs water. Adequately moistened soil should form a ball when squeezed.
Our soils, and weather, vary tremendously! The above guidelines for watering should be adjusted as follows for unusual conditions;
- Heavy clay soil or cool wet weather – Water half as often.
- Sandy, gravelly soil or very hot weather – Water twice as often.
Provide trees with a late season (November) watering, sending them into the Winter well hydrated.
Watering – Second Growing Season and Beyond
Trees should be occasionally watered throughout the Spring, Summer and Fall. Special attention should be given to your trees during hot and dry parts of the Summer months.
Mulching Your Trees
Putting mulch around a tree not only makes lawns more attractive but also provides other benefits. Good tree mulch consists of chipped wood and bark, and in some cases color may be added. This protective covering controls weeds, helps maintain moisture and temperature in the soil near the tree, and saves it from damage caused by insects, lawn equipment and some diseases. Typically, three or four inches of mulch placed out to the drip-line of a tree is sufficient. Keep the mulch away from the tree trunk, so there is no contact.
Fertilizing Your Trees
Fertilize your trees the following year after being transplanted. Many retail stores have tree spikes specifically for evergreen and deciduous trees.