1: Bare Root Trees
Keep the roots damp and covered in soil or mulch until you plant. Prune back dry, damaged, long or broken roots, and damaged branch ends. Soak the roots in Art Knapp Transplanting fertilizer 5-15-5 and water, for a minimum of 2 hours prior to planting.
Plant in a sunny, well-drained location. Dig a hole twice as deep and at least three times as wide as the root spread. Mix a small amount of peat or compost with the existing soil. Add a large handful of bonemeal. Planting depth is indicated by the soil line visible around the base of the trunk. Do not plant any deeper.
Stake trunk securely and fill in the hole with soil, shaking the tree to settle the soil, then gently tamp down and water well. Add a mulch to prevent moisture loss and to discourage the soil from packing down. Well rotted manure or compost to a depth of about 2 inches, making sure it doesn’t touch the trunk of the tree, is ideal.
Soak well twice a week in cool weather, (MORE in hot weather.)
2: B &B (Balled and Burlap) Trees
These shrubs and trees have been field grown, dug, and then their roots protected for shipping in burlap. For best results, soak the rootball, burlap and all, in a mixture of Art Knapp transplanting fertilizer 5-15-5 and water, according to label directions for 20 minutes before planting.
Dig a hole a little deeper than the burlap rootball and at least twice as wide. To your already existing soil, mix a small amount of organic matter( peat, compost or rotted manure) Add a few handfuls of bonemeal to the bottom of the planting hole.
Settle your tree or shrub into the hole so that the plant’s soil line will not be any lower than the surrounding soil. If need be, remove any soil from the stem to expose the ‘flare’ of the trunk.
Fill with water, and let drain. If staking is required,now would be the time to do it. Some burlap might be above the soil line. If the sack is burlap, do not remove from the plant. Simply cut the string, slit some of the bag, unwind the burlap from the top of the plant, fold it back and bury it in the hole. If the sack or string are made from plastic, carefully open it up and remove it altogether.
Fill the rest of the hole with your soil mixture, tamp down gently but firmly, and water again.
A small dike around a newly planted tree or shrub will help to hold water, remove this once summer is over. A light mulch of bark or straw helps to prevent the rootball from drying. Keep mulch 2-3 inches back from the stem of the plant.
SOAK (slow deep water) not sprinkle twice a week (more in hot or dry and windy weather.)
3: Potted Trees
Dig a hole a little deeper than the new pot and at least twice as wide. To your already existing soil, add a very small amount organic matter. Do not change the composition of the soil to any great extent, your trees and shrubs need to get used to your soil.
If possible, soak your new plant with it’s container on, for ½ hour in a bucket or tub of water to which Art Knapp Transplanting fertilizer 5-15-5 has been added, according to label directions. If the container is too large to be soaked in a bucket, water well with transplanter liquid mixture once the tree has been planted.
Put some of the soil mixture in the bottom of the hole so that the soil line of the shrub or tree will be equal to the existing soil line. Add enough bone meal to whiten the bottom of the hole, and mix it with the soil. Carefully remove the plant from its pot, slicing the container if it doesn’t come out easily. If the root ball is very full, lightly massage the outer roots to encourage them to unwind.
Settle the plant into the hole, fill in with soil, and gently but firmly tamp down. Never bury your plant deeper than its existing soil line, as this can kill many trees and shrubs. Soak the soil around the plant, add more soil if needed, and soak again. A dike formed around the new planting to hold water is a benefit in dry weather. Make sure to remove the dike once winter comes.
Soak, not sprinkle, your new shrub or tree twice a week (more in hot, or dry and windy weather.) Cover the soil of new plantings with mulch to help retain moisture, keeping the mulch 2-3 inches away from the stem.