Here’s a typical situation: A customer is looking at the selection of flowering shrubs that are on sale and seems like they want to purchase some but then they’ll say this, “I should probably wait though.” Then I’ll ask, “Why?”, “I heard that you shouldn’t transplant shrubs during summer.”. Register today I’m always (sadly) amazed when I see trees with bark mulch piled in a volcano shaped mound around the trunks of trees. Webinar The spot where the trunk of the tree meets the soil of its ball or pot should exactly match the level of the soil around your planting hole. When you’re digging up and moving an already established tree or shrub, that’s called transplanting. If you don't want to transplant in autumn, move plants in the early spring. Indeed, they’ll be grateful to you for getting them into the cool, moist earth. When preparing any hole for planting, make it two to three times … The crisp autumn air and a few hard freezes at night have allowed the plants to shut down their root systems and begin their dormant stage. Plants to be moved in the fall (October or November) should be root pruned in March, and those to be moved in spring (March) should be root pruned in October. If the soil is extra sandy, add peat moss to help improve the soil’s ability to retain moisture. TRANSPLANTING TREES AND SHRUBS Dr. Leonard Perry, Extension Professor University of Vermont If you need to move a tree or shrub in the landscape, early spring before buds begin to swell is an ideal time. I have more luck transplanting trees and shrub under certain conditions. Flower color differs by variety, but you'll most commonly see shrub roses in shades of pink, red, white, and yellow. It is the act of digging out that causes severe stress. What would you think? After 12 weeks, water weekly until roots are established. But if you must move a plant during the summer, here's how to take care while doing so. Remember: roots is roots and stems is stems. Whether you are transplanting a flowering bush from a container or are digging up an already planted bush for relocation, the best time to transplant is when the ground is workable and the plant is not blooming or recovering after blooming. Test Garden Tip: Even modern shrub roses have thorns, so plant them away from sidewalks and pathways. Growing Herbs Indoors until 12/31/20. OK, now that we’ve cleared up that bit of confusion, let’s take a look at how to properly plant a shrub or tree to avoid a deadly (for the plants) mistake many folks make. The easiest way to check this is to lay a stick (the handle of your shovel works) across the planting hole and make sure that the top of the root ball is level with the ground. It is interesting to see the questions change as the season progresses. With less plant structure to support, your transplanted bush or tree can focus on re-growing the root system. Here I’m planting a Red Dogwood tree, but the same planting method is used for any woody shrub or tree. Over the years, I’ve heard this many, many times before and, quite literally speaking, the statement is true but that isn’t what they are talking about…there’s a major difference between “planting” and “transplanting”. Some species do not transplant well in the fall (e.g., birch, magnolia, poplar, redbud). Woody shrubs and trees also fare well when transplanted in autumn. The spot on the tree trunk where the soil is in the pot or ball needs to be visible after planting. You must avoid suffocating the tree by NOT burying the trunk or stem under the soil. How to Transplant Shrubs in Summer. Types. Prune the roots to a manageable size well in advance so the cuts will have time to heal before transplanting trees and shrubs. Next, I place the tree into the hole and check again to make sure I’m at the proper planting depth. Remember: the plant must adapt slowly to harsh changes in location in order to survive a move. If it does not appear that your plant will survive and thrive in that site you should reconsider moving it there. Water heavily after planting to remove any air pockets from the soil. If planting in summer, or if a rogue heat wave hits, be extra attentive about watering newly planted shrubs. Let’s go through the process and I’ll show you the correct way to plant. Common advice suggests that you should reduce the amount of top growth to match the root loss. I haven’t planted too deeply as long as I can see the original soil that the tree came in. For most deciduous shrubs and trees, including our blueberry bushes – late fall is a great time for transplanting! I do okay if: – If I pull a tree (bare root) from some local woods – I transplant … You should also take care when applying bark and other mulches not to pile them up against the stems and trunks of plants. Many will opt to pile it up around the trunk or stem. Enter your email address to receive notifications of new posts by email. How to Transplant Hydrangea Shrubs. Here are the basic steps to successfully transplanting bushes and shrubs: Give the plant a good trim. Don’t dig up shrubs in your yard once summer arrives but it is OK to plant those that already are potted or balled. Low Maintenance Gardening Crape Myrtles love to grow roots when the ground is warm so use that to your advantage. To keep most of the roots within a small area, root prune in the spring or fall before transplanting. August 5, 2011. Transplanting is stressful for plants; it can result in deterioration of the shrub or even death. Calculate the Size of the Root Ball. It will have the same negative effect as planting too deeply. Webinar Summer planting is possible if a judicious watering program is followed, particularly if the plants were dug from the nursery in spring or grown in containers. Planting in the summer only requires a slight bit more work on your part but will reward you with a hardy plant with a good root system. When planting and transplanting trees and shrubs, it's important to consider the site conditions and the type of tree stock. When you shop in your local nursery or garden center, you are buying plants that were dug and balled or potted much earlier when the plant was still dormant. Bury the roots but let the stems be free to breathe. Transplant shrubs and trees in fall as the plants go dormant. Jan. 20, 2021 Transplanting a Tree During Summer Months. Fall is also a traditional time for transplanting shrubs and trees. We always like to look them over to see what went wrong. The dark soil where the stem met the soil in the pot should still be just visible near the trunk of the tree. This will collect water and direct it down to the root system below. Warm climates: Plant early enough in spring so roots have enough time to adjust before temperatures rise. When you replant it in its new location during summer's heat, the shock can be fatal. Don’t you think trees at the garden center would be happier planted in the cool, dark earth rather than sitting on the ground in their pots or balls in the heat until fall? Choose a well-drained location where sun levels match requirements for each bush. Estimate the width and depth of the root ball (roots plus soil) by … Mulching. Even in Zone 5, where the Grump understands moose and polar bears regularly wander the streets, it gets hot in summer. Mulch the surrounding soil with bark or wood chips to conserve moisture and moderate temperature extremes. When you decide to move your shrubs, there is no need to cut them down, in fact the more leaves they have the more energy they will produce to help in a speedy recovery. Many folks put off their planting until fall because they think that they shouldn’t do it now. Transplanting is… When you’re digging up and moving an already established tree or shrub, that’s called transplanting. Sadly, when you have a Lifetime Nursery Guarantee like we do at Hewitt’s, you get to see a lot of dead shrubs and trees. As a rule-of-thumb, plants that have been growing in position for more than five years are much less likely to survive transplanting than younger specimens. If plants are being moved because of a space issue, don’t repeat the same mistake, allow for plenty of room in the new location. If the stem or trunk above ground is covered with soil, it hinders the plant’s ability to pass moisture and nutrients from the root system to the branches and leaves above. The soil is warm and the air is cool; perfect for recovering from the move and establishing roots. Shrubs normally relocate better than trees. If the plant is too low, remove it from the hole and add soil to the bottom to raise it up until you get it at the proper level. Late summer is usually a good time to move evergreens. Shrubs can be planted almost any time of year, although spring and fall are typically the best times to plant. Again, wet down the soil the night before the move. Fall after the leaves drop is the next best time. There are rare exceptions (like tomatoes), but it is a rule that is best obeyed. You can, however, successfully plant new perennials, annuals and … Jan. 13, 2021 The sun is too intense and the heat can be relentless. Deciduous plants usually transplant better than conifers. Site Map, Trees, Shrubs, Roses, Vines & Groundcovers, Spring Flowering Trees and Shrubs Blooming in Fall, Root Prune Instead of Moving Indoor Houseplants to a Larger Pot, How to Make Daffodil Bouquets Last Longer. To increase your chances of success, evaluate the suitability of the new planting site by checking the growing conditions, including light levels, soil pH, drainage, and exposure. You'll see all the posts for that time period. What do we do with it? TRANSPLANTING is best done while the plant is dormant during late fall or very early spring as soon as the soil can be worked. Note: The Times Union is not responsible for posts and comments written by non-staff members. Late summer and early fall is the time to plant, divide, and transplant many different perennials, shrubs, and trees including spring flowering perennials. Proper watering, mulching, fertilizing, pruning, staking and winter care will help keep your new and transplanted trees healthy. Register today If you have PLANTING to do, do it as soon as you can. The spot you transplant from will still have approximately 75% of the moved plant's root system left in the ground. When added to the surface, peat moss will dry out, and in a wick-like manner, will draw moisture from below the plant, drying it out. Bayberry bushes transplanted in the fall develop strong root systems over the winter months. 1  Summer is never the best time to move or transplant garden plants. There are a few tips to transplanting shrubs in summer. The importance of maintaining proper planting depth extends to 99% of planting situations. When transplanting hydrangeas, the first step is to dig a hole in your new location. Some shrubs can grow to just 6 inches tall, like a hardy ground cover, others to more than 10 feet tall, the size of a small tree. This seems trivial, but it can make all the difference to the plants’ health and survival. The fertilizer can injure the new roots and stress the plant by encouraging top growth instead of root development. Webinar I can't keep them where they are and I thought since they are still small I could cut them back, transplant, water them very well the rest of this season and they would take root in their new location. You aren’t digging up shrubs you’re purchasing from the garden center so you aren’t disturbing the root system or shocking the plant. Privacy Policy  | I answer a LOT of gardening questions either in the “Ask the expert” section of our website or in person during my visits to the garden centers. Planting and transplanting are two garden tasks that have a big effect on how well your plants grow. Early spring transplanting gives the plants time to adjust to their new location before the stressful summer heat and winter cold. This is the point where inexperienced gardeners make another mistake. Here are some of them. They should be watered at planting time and at these intervals: 1-2 weeks after planting, water daily. Then water thoroughly and often enough to keep the roots and surrounding soil moist but not soggy wet. Growing Edibles Indoors There are different planting and transplanting methods for different types of tree stock. Houseplants - Tips for Success Browse previous blog posts by month and year of entry. Think about it…if it wasn’t possible to plant in summer, landscapers would be out of business. Over the years a pattern has become apparent. Late spring to summer is the worst time of year to transplant plants. Tree and shrub roots extend well beyond the volume of soil that you will be able to move. Feb. 24, 2021 They have been in place for 3-4 years. Treat these plants, like they are brand new shrubs. In other words, the plant’s stem or trunk should NOT be sunk below the level of the surrounding area. Young plants transplant fairly well, but more established specimens will suffer greater stress and require advanced preparation. DON’T DO IT! Modern shrub roses offer beautiful blooms all summer and autumn on disease-resistant, easy-growing plants. How to Transplant a Shrub in the Summer The best time to transplant most plants is in fall or winter when they're dormant, or just as new growth is beginning to emerge in early spring. Feb. 17, 2021 Learn More, © 2020 Melinda Myers   All rights reserved  |   As you can see, I’ve dug too deep so I need to fill it in a bit. For an average sized tree or shrub, you’ll want to add about a cup of Bio-tone (Bio-Tone contains bone meal plus other great ingredients for starting a strong root system). Cut off about 1/3 of the plant foliage. It might take a year or three but that plant will likely be returned to us for replacement. Early spring before growth begins is also prime time to make the move. Planting is… In other words, assume you are selecting a new plant for the new site and ask the question "do the conditions at the site meet the growing requirements of the plant?" Prepare the proper planting hole. I’ll add compost or peat moss to the original soil to build up the bottom of the planting hole to insure that the stem isn’t buried too deeply. From maple trees to marigolds and even your houseplants. Perennial plants respond well to fall transplanting. You can still see the dirt on the stem way above the crown of the plant. Shrubs tend to transplant better than trees and shrubs with shallower roots tend to transplant better than shrubs with deeper roots. Plus, watch past webinars on demand Webinar Planting in July is better than August; and August is better than September and so on. 90% of the dead shrubs and tree we see return failed because they were planted too deeply. Plants have a chance to adjust before the stress of summer … How to Plant Trees & Shrubs in the Summer For example, you may want to take your shrubs with you if you are moving or you may have to move the plant because of the weather. I have a forsythia and a lilac that I would like to move to a different location. The Best Time to Transplant Flowering Shrubs. Summer is the best time to plant Crape Myrtles for instance. This reduces the ratio of leaves to roots, and helps keep the plant in relative balance, making it easier for the plant to recover from transplant shock. If you attempt this during the long hot days of summer when the plant is in the full flush of growth, you run a very real risk of sending the plant into fatal shock. Disturbing the roots of an actively growing tree or shrub in hot weather causes transplanting shock and probable death, even if you water it. I would say that my luck with transplanting is 50/50. 3-12 weeks after planting, water every 2 to 3 days. When you dig a hole, then fill it with a large root ball, there’s going to be soil left over. Decide new location of shrub, keeping in mind sunlight, soil drainage and protection from elements to insure most successful results. This helps to minimize the shock of the roots during the transplanting process and keep the plant hydrated. Early spring transplanting gives the plants time to adjust to their new location before the stressful summer heat and winter cold. Fall after the leaves drop is the next best time. Once you’ve made sure that the crown of the plant (the dividing line on the plant between what is above the ground and what is below) is at the proper level, fill in the rest of the planting hole. What you are doing when you bring your new shrub or perennial home is PLANTING, not TRANSPLANTING. Newly planted trees or shrubs require more frequent watering than established trees and shrubs. Fall is a great time to transplant shrubs and trees in the landscape. Moving them midsummer is harder on the plant since the leaves are fully expanded and hot weather has arrived. Light: Full sun Don't fertilize the shrubs for at least one year after transplanting. Use the extra soil to build a dish-shaped dike or berm out away from the stem of the plant. I used to add add bone meal to the bottom of the planting hole. When the crown of the plant is below the soil and the bark at the base of the tree is covered with dirt, it will eventually die. Moving perennials in summer has a much higher success rate than tree or shrubs, because it's much easier to dig them without disturbing the roots. Transplanting is… I guess it looks cozy, like tucking the plant in or something. Dig the hole only as deep as the root ball or the pot that contains the roots. While these are the best times for moving hydrangea bushes, you can really do it any time during the year without killing the plant, provided it’s not in the heat of summer. Register today You can add more peat moss and bone meal around the sides of the root ball but make sure that the top 1/4 of the hole is filled with the original soil with no peat moss added. If you can, wait until early next spring, before any new growth begins and flowers appear, it will be easier on your plants. Gardeners have done it out of necessity, it just reduces your chance for success. The myth of “summer transplanting” Wait until the plant goes dormant in the cool weather of fall. However, sometimes you … These days I’ve switched to something better. Make the planting hole a little bit wider than the root ball. If you are planning to transplant trees from the wild, you should know that this is more difficult to have plants survive successfully. When transplanting trees, shrubs or perennials you tend to damage the root system. The most important step to planting is watering the shrub immediately after planting.  Register today The best times of year to transplant trees and shrubs are spring and fall; however, certain situations may make it necessary to move your plants outside of those seasons. Growing up in the 1950s and having a new home in Midland, one of the rituals post-supper was Mom would take the hose and water in the newly planted shrubs. Roots of trees and shrubs normally grow well beyond the soil volume that can be moved. Properly applied mulch can increase tree growth in the first few years after planting. There’s one misconception that crops up every summer… the difference between “planting” and “transplanting”…and there is a HUGE difference. Would it be harmful for them to be moved now, in midsummer? Peonies are a good example of a plant that prefers to be transplanted in autumn if it must happen at all. 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Air is cool ; perfect for recovering from the garden center so you aren’t digging up shrubs summer... Will still have approximately 75 % of the planting hole a little bit wider than the ball! On how well your plants grow their new location before the stressful summer heat and winter care help! Also a traditional time for transplanting shrubs and trees it be harmful for them to be visible after planting not. Likely be returned to us for replacement roots tend to transplant trees from the soil the night before the summer.

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