The proper way to transplant a tree begins with preparing the soil. Prepare the ground by digging a hole twice as wide as the root ball. Water the tree a day before transplanting and prepare the planting site in the spring. Next, prepare the tree for transportation by wrapping it in burlap and tying it with twine. Carefully lift the tree by its base, not by its trunk. Gently transport it to the new planting site.

Create A Hole Twice As Large As The Root Ball

If you’re transplanting a tree in its final location, the best way to get it to grow roots deep and wide is to drill a hole twice as wide and deep as the root ball. While this will require some extra effort on your part, the result will be a tree with many years of life ahead of it. Drilling a hole twice the width and depth of the root ball is important for two reasons. First, the extra room around the root ball makes it easier to remove packing materials and ensure that the roots can grow quickly out of the ball, thus aiding in the establishment of the tree in its new location. Second, fertilizing the soil around the root ball does not necessarily increase root growth. High nitrogen content in the soil may actually slow down root growth.

The second reason to drill a hole twice as wide as the rootball is to make sure that the plant can grow in the hole you’ve prepared. The soil in the hole must have good drainage. You should also ensure that the rootball is on undisturbed soil. The soil ball should be at least two inches deep and have no roots larger than 1/2 inch diameter.

Water Your Tree Before Transplanting

When you plant a tree in a new location, it’s important to provide adequate water to the new plant. The amount of water a tree needs directly relates to the outdoor temperatures and the number of hours of daylight. You can calculate the amount of water a tree needs per day by measuring the diameter of the trunk six inches above ground level. You should also consider the type of soil to avoid root rot and other problems caused by overwatering.

Do Not Transplant During The Winter Season

There are many benefits to spring as the best time to transplant trees and plants. While winter can be a bit chilly, ground conditions will be less frosty and snow will cover the plant to help prevent rotting. You should wait until ground temperature is above freezing before tackling the task. Winter is also the worst time to transplant trees and shrubs because they will lose water through their leaves, transplant trees and shrubs before their leaves have fully grown.

The first reason winter is the worst time to transplant trees is because the soil is too cold. When it’s cold, a tree will suffer shock and die if it’s not kept well hydrated. In cooler temperatures, trees will likely survive the transplant. Even if you can’t avoid winter, you should wait until the ground thaws before you dig. Remember to water your tree the day before transplanting so the roots can be easily moved.

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