Recently we were hired to plant a privacy hedge in Ladysmith. The weather is perfect for planting trees…for the trees…not so much for people who don’t like the rain. The trees were purchased at Dinter’s and are very healthy and full. The root balls were packed in clay and wrapped in burlap. This ensures the roots stay moist. The trees were 8 to 10 feet tall and weighed about 120 lbs each.
Preparation for planting.
- We measured the entire length of the planting area.
- We divided the number of trees by the length so we knew how far apart to space the trees.
- We set a couple of trees in place to see how they looked against the fence and to decide how far from the fence to plant them.
- We calculated how much soil we would require for the planting. In order for the trees to thrive we mixed 1 part organic garden soil with the original garden soil.
- We knocked off half of the clay off of the roots of the trees to ready them for planting. You can plant them with the clay and the burlap on them but we chose not to. The roots must work that much harder to grow through the clay and burlap to get to the soil nutrients. Since the clay and the burlap are designed to protect the root ball against dry conditions and we are in rainy season, we knew they would not be at risk.
- We picked up 1.5 yards of soil ( You can find a soil calculator on line or ask your local soil retailer to calculate how much soil you will need depending on the area you are planting.) and 2 bales of coconut peat along with 2 pails of bone meal and 2 pails of blood meal. This helps to minimize the transplant shock as the nutrients feed the tree a balance of what it requires. The coconut peat is sustainable unlike regular peat moss that comes from bogs and is not sustainable. Both lighten the soil, hold moisture and improve soil structure.
- We took all of the sod out and started digging holes. We dug the hole 2 times bigger then the root ball and 2 times deeper. This allows the roots an easier time spreading out and growing. We placed the first tree in the hole and measured from the centre of the root ball to the centre of the next root ball to ensure they were equally spaced apart.
- We mixed our soils together and added 2 cups of bone meal and 2 cups of blood meal to each wheel barrow of soil. Then we placed the soil in the bottom of the hole, placed the tree and packed soil around it until it was just above the ground level. This ensures as it settles it will be flush with the ground.
- We picked up 1 1/2 yards of mulch and top dressed the trees after planting as it holds moisture during dry seasons, helps to control weeds and for its pleasing aesthetics. Happy Planting! See you in the garden or the garden centre! 🙂