GardenSMART Newsletter Signup
Visit our Sponsors!
Visit our Sponsors and win.


---Anne K Moore October 2009---
Photo by Anne K Moore

Not only is Fall a good time to get trees and shrubs into the ground, it is also a good time to plant cactus (in the southwest, according to the National Gardening Assoc.).Fall planting allows the roots of most perennials, shrubs, and trees to take hold before they have to supply food and water to newly springing leaves or flowers.

There is at least one exception to the rule.Palm trees come to mind.They should be planted in the heat of summer.

When you knock the plant out of the pot, check the roots. Use your fingers to rough up and tease the roots loose on the edges. If they are matted, winding around each other, or tangled, use a knife or serrated trowel to slice through the outer mass in two or three areas.

Do not plant the root ball too deep.This is the number one killer of plants, especially trees and shrubs.This GardenSMART Video, 2008, show12, shows just how to plant a tree so that it will put down a good root system.

The video also demonstrates staking to develop a strong trunk.Many trees do not need staking.The shorter the time trees remain staked, the stronger the trunk will be.They should never be staked longer than six months.

If you use granular chemical fertilizers, do not get any directly on the roots.At one time, it was thought that putting compost into the planting hole or mixing it into the back-fill was a good thing to do.We now know that this just keeps the roots circling in the good soil.

Trees and shrubs are lazy, just like many of us.Why should they go outside the easy eating spot to forage in less-than-ideal soil?To be healthy, the roots must spread.Use tough love; do not plant them in altered soil.It is OK, however, to amend the whole planting area for five or more feet out from the base of the plant.

Look for the flare of the trunk at its base.Keep this area above ground.Mulch to conserve moisture but keep the mulch pulled back from the trunk.Water the plants at least weekly if there isnít sufficient rainfall.Even drought tolerant plants must be kept watered until they establish themselves.

We can help sustain the planet by planting trees, shrubs, and flowers.All of these living things remove carbon dioxide from the air.Large trees, especially, remove carbon dioxide from the atmosphere. According to the Arbor Day Foundation, one tree removes over a ton of CO2 in its lifetime.Help the Planet, plant something green.


All articles are copyrighted and remain the property of the author.

Article URL:

Back to Articles List                               

GardenSMART Featured Article

Written by Joan Maloof, Photographs by Robert Llewellyn

Trees don't have two eyes like we do, yet they can see. They know how much light is hitting their leaves, and they know the quality of that light, too. They know if it's summer or winter by the length of the day, and they know if it's noon or afternoon by the wavelength of the light. Read more...

Join fellow garden lovers, history buffs and music enthusiasts to discover the quaint towns and colorful gardens of Holland and Belgium in May of 2018.

This exciting journey will be hosted by nationally known host Eric Johnson, of Public Television's blockbuster show GardenSmart. Your river cruise begins in Amsterdam where you'll see works by Rembrandt and Van Gogh, Anne Frank's House, and see the city's most famous gardens. Then spend a full morning on the grounds of the most beautiful spring garden in the world-Keukenhof! Visit the picturesque Belgian towns of Bruges and Ghent as well as Kinderdijk, with the Netherlands' iconic collection of 19 authentic windmills that is a UNESCO World Heritage Site. In addition, history buffs will experience a captivating tour of the WWI trenches of Flanders and WWII Arnhem Battlefield of A Bridge Too Far fame. You won't want to miss this extraordinary garden adventure to Holland and Belgium.

Book by November 15, 2017 and save up to $1200 dollars per person!

To register call: Alki Tours at 800-895-2554

  Click here to sign up for our monthly NEWSLETTER packed with great articles and helpful tips for your home, garden and pets!  
Copyright © 1998-2012 GSPC. All Rights Reserved.