When is the best time to plant your trees?
We always recommend planting trees when they’re dormant and are therefore less likely be damaged. Tree planting season runs between November and March, although it can last longer within Scotland or Northern Ireland.
We offer single trees and small tree packs on our shop all year round as they have their own plug of compost to protect them and can therefore be planted at any time.
We don’t suggest planting a larger number of trees in the winter months as it can lead to higher losses Therefore, our large-scale planting projects are only available during the season of planting trees.
When the trees are up
Store the trees upright, shielded from wind and frost. If the tree’s roots appear to look like they’re drying out you can gently spray the roots with water to keep them wet.
Make sure you have a site ready
Before you plant you should mark the location each tree will be put by using stones spray paint or canes
If the area you are planting is overgrown, cut the grass short and weed. This will allow planting to be easier and will reduce the the competition for water, which will help your saplings thrive.
What is the space that trees need?
We recommend planting trees approximately 2 metres apart but you are able to plant them up to 1-5 metres apart in accordance with your space and design. Wavy lines look more natural as opposed to a logical row of trees. If you’re planning to plant a single hedge, space your trees 30cm apart. For a thick hedge make sure you plant an entire row of trees in a zig-zag pattern. Set your rows 50cm apart, and the trees spaced 40-45cm apart.
We recommend pitting your trees as it is more thorough and guarantees that your trees will have greater contact with soil. It’s suitable for all kinds of soils and is particularly suitable for areas that are susceptible to drought, but it could be difficult if you have hard-to-digest soil.
To plant a new tree, you’ll require a spade, a tree that is clearly visible, a spiral to protect it and an axe to support the spiral, and a place to plant it.
First thing you’ll need to do is make an entrance. It doesn’t need to be wide, however it must be deep enough to hold all the tree roots. Be sure that you don’t put your soil too far away since you’ll need it later on.
When your hole is deep enough, remove the tree and move it over to the other side which I think this is the most efficient method to accomplish this because you can check the depth of the hole. You can also see that every tree’s root is covered, and that’s the most important bit.
Make sure the soil is firm – you can utilize the heel of your boot for this and make sure that all the air gaps are out. It needs to be nice and firm . You don’t want frost getting in later on.
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Once you’re sure it’s firm give it a small tug and hopefully it should remain put.
The next thing you’ll need is your cane. The cane will be put into the tree, but not too close because you don’t want to force it through the roots that you’ve just planted.
Then, take your spiral, take one end and then tie it around the cane and tie it to create a secure connection. Then gently wind it up to its top. Be sure that you don’t damage your tree while you’re doing it.
This bit’s a bit fiddly and requires some time, but you’ll learn it in the end. It’s best to push it down into the ground, maybe just a centimeter just to make sure that no vermin can get underneath it. Finally, you can ring the tree. It’s that all there is to it.
It’s a method that works well with grass and soil that is bare. It’s a lot easier than pit-planting if you’ve had a stony soil.
Press your spade until it is completely in the ground, then push it backwards to make an slit. Make sure the slit is deep enough for the tree roots.
Make sure the slit is open using the spade. You can then place your tree inside by using the root plug approximately 2cm beneath the surface.
The spade should be removed and pushed the soil back into the tree.
If you’re using tree guards or spirals to guard your saplings, this is the stage to add these. The protection should be firmly pressed on the dirt.
T-notch plantation is a different technique that can be used for grassy ground, but not necessarily bare soil. This is a good alternative to pit planting in areas susceptible to drought, but is not recommended for locations with clay soils.
Make sure to fully push the spade down into the earth.
At a right angle to the initial cut continue step 1 to create a T-shape.
Use the spade to reach the original cut and lever it upwards, cutting the turf.
The tree should be placed carefully between the turf segments.
The spade should be pushed back and the grass will fall into place. Check that all roots have been inserted in the drain.
Adjust the tree so that it is level with the ground and firm up the soil around the tree.
Ten Tools You’ll Need When You’re Planting Trees
Whether you’re placing some of the most elegant shade trees, or planning to purchase an orchard full of fruits and nuts The process of planting trees will require many tools to get the job done. By armed with the appropriate equipment will ensure the process goes smoothly to give your trees a strong start.
If you’re planting your first tree in spring or waiting until fall to capitalize on milder weather this handy list of 10 necessary tools for planting trees will make sure that you don’t forget an important component of the task:
Trees are heavy, particularly those grown within large containers. They aren’t something you want to carry them for long distances, therefore having a cart (either an unpowered cart or a bigger tractor-pulled trailer) will allow you to bring the trees right to their holes without breaking your back.
Tractor-pulled trailers are also useful for transporting the rest of your tools for tree planting.
2. GPS Receiver
If you pair it with a tape measure (see further below) or graph paper, an GPS receiver can help you plan the most ideal location for every tree, allowing you to envision your orchard’s maturation while the trees are still young.
3. Shovel and Spade
These tools for planting trees, such as a shovel that can scoop dirt and spade for breaking sod, and cutting through the soil will assist you quickly and effectively dig the wide, deep holes that are required to plant trees.
4. Digging Bar
There’s a possibility that you’ll run into large rocks as you dig the holes. If you’re like me, once you’ve selected the ideal location for your tree, you’ll be determined to dig the hole no matter what obstacles you might encounter.
A digging bar can help to remove large boulders off the floor.
If you’re pouring loose soil into the soil surrounding the holes, it’ll be difficult to clean the soil back up following the actual event.
Instead, shovel the soil into a large bucket. This will help keep things tidier and help you save time when you backfill the hole. A different bucket could be used to contain rocks.
6. Tape Measure
Instead of estimating how deep your hole is and hope they’re right, measure the width and height of the rootballs you’ll be planting to ensure that your holes match perfectly. Dig the holes a couple of inches deeper than needed, then backfill the bottom with loose soil until your tree is sitting at the proper level.
This will create softer soil for the roots to penetrate very early.
7. Utility Knife
It’s difficult to get large trees removed from their pots. While I enjoy the idea of preserving plastic pots for future use I’ve discovered the most efficient solution is to slice multiple edges of the container with a knife that can be used to take the tree out this way.
The utility knife can also be utilized to cut through overly crowded roots growing around the outside of the rootball to encourage outward growth.
If your trees appear to be spindly and/or slightly crooked in their growth, stake them with a T-post can help them to withstand the winds and help them get straight until they’re large enough to be able to stand on their own.
There is also the option of installing T-posts on each tree to hold a fence made of wire to guard against hungry deer.
9. Fence Post Driver
T-posts won’t be of much use without an option to put them in place. A manual or gas-powered fence post driver can quickly put them in place.
10. Water Jugs or Tanks
Newly planted trees require plenty of water. So bring an extra supply of water to provide them with a good drink after planting.
If you’re within reach of a garden hose, perfect. If there’s no water source, water jugs or tanks can be carried via wagon to further places. I have a 35-gallon legs tank for watering the trees in my orchard and I’ve been happy with the results.
Have fun planting!