How to Plant a Tree
Trees are a vital part of the planet’s ecological balance. They convert the carbon dioxide we exhale into breathable oxygen. There are many benefits of having trees in abundance. Perhaps one of the most appealing of these benefits to the average person is that adding a tree to your home’s landscape is a great way to increase its property value and curb appeal.
If you’re looking to add a tree to your landscaping, there are a few things that need to be considered and completed beforehand, including:
- Learn whether or not your neighborhood allows residents to add trees
- If you need special permissions to plant a tree, get them before moving forward
- Choose a species of tree that is native to where you live to improve its chances of survival
- Decide where the tree will go on your property and keep it a safe distance away from the foundation and sidewalks
Once all that is ready and you have your tree handy, you’ll need to dig a hole where the tree will be planted. The hole should be twice the diameter of the tree’s root bundle. This will allow the roots to grow without too much resistance as they establish themselves. The hole should be deep enough to cover the entire root bundle, up to the root flare (where the roots become the trunk). The flare is rather easy to distinguish because it will be wider than the rest of the trunk. It’s a good idea to have a tarp on the ground. Put the dirt you dig up on the tarp so it’s easy to move later.
When the hole is finished, remove any wiring or burlap encasing the root bundle and massage the dirt containing it to loosen it up and give the roots some room to move around. Carefully put the tree in the hole, taking care to make sure it’s straight, and begin refilling it with the soil. You can also add compost if you have some available. Tap the soil with the face of the shovel as you go to remove any air pickets that may form as you bury the roots. Be sure to not bury the root flare!
When you’re finished, feed the tree an appropriate amount of water for the species. Many trees call for 15 gallons of water at this initial watering. Add mulch to the area around the tree to help lock in moisture, but keep it at least six inches away from the tree’s base to prevent it from rotting.
You’ll have to water the tree on a weekly basis for a few years or until the roots are properly established, but be careful not to drown the tree. With proper care, the tree will grow alongside you and your family and will be a beautiful addition to your home.