By Miron Properties |
Published on March 12,2013 at 4:06PM
Honoring Arbor Day: Plant a Tree, Show Some TLC
The weather is warming up, the ground is thawing, and spring is sprouting new life! What better way to spice up the season and honor an age-old tradition at the same time than to plant a tree! Arbor Day is just around the corner (Friday, April 26th) and many people have been carrying out founder J. Sterling Morton’s idea to set aside a special day for tree planting. Believe it or not it has been over 135 years since this tradition first “took root.” Volunteers, schools, and whole neighborhoods take part in local tree-planting as well as various other activities to celebrate Arbor Day. You can commemorate the day in several ways, either individually, within a group, or even both – visit a local park or take a nature hike, volunteer with a local tree-planting organization, organize and/or sponsor a beautification project in a public area, host tree trivia contests and give away trees, just to name a few!
Here are some helpful tips for the perfect tree planting experience:
Prepare the perfect hole for planting. Dig the hole 2-3 times the width of the root ball. Do NOT dig deeper than root ball depth. Make the sides of the hole slant gradually outward.
Fore bare root trees. Neatly cut away any broken or damaged roots. Soak the roots for a few hours prior to planting to allow them to absorb water.
For container-grown trees. Completely remove plastic or metal containers before planting. Carefully cut through any circling roots. Remove the top half of pressed peat/paper containers.
For Balled and Burlapped (“B & B”). Be sure to have all of the ropes cut. Pull the burlap at least 1/3 of the way down; slit the remaining burlap to encourage root growth. If in a wire basket, cut away the top of the basket.
Plant the Tree. Gently place the tree in the hole. Partially backfill with the soil from the hole, water to settle the soil, then finish back-filling the hole. Tamp the soil gently, but do not step on the root ball.
Here are some tree maintenance tips for after you have planted your tree:
Remove tags and labels.
Do not stake unless the tree has a large crown or if the planting is situated on a site where wind or people may push the tree over. Stake for a maximum of one year. Prune only the damaged branches.
Soak the soil well making sure no air pockets form between roots. Wait until next year to apply fertilizer.
Spread 2”-3” of mulch over the planting area, but do not place it up against the trunk.
Be sure the root ball has plenty of water throughout the year.