Installing & Watering
Here you will find complete instructions on installing and watering your new plantings. Please feel free to talk to any of our associates and they will be happy to answer any additional questions you may have. Get ready to dig in and start planting!
Installing Container Trees & Shrubs
Dig the hole at least 6" wider than the diameter of the container, and deep enough to allow 1-2" of the root ball to remain above the existing grade. Mix 2/3 of the excavated soil thoroughly with 1/3 peat moss (or preferred amendment). Remove the root ball from the container. If the root system has entirely filled the container, gently score or slice the roots. This will encourage new root growth into the existing soil. Place the root ball in the hole. Be sure the plant is upright and centered. The junction of the trunk and root system should be at or slightly above grade. Backfill with the soil mixture of 2/3 existing soil and 1/3 peat moss. Tamp soil firmly to remove air pockets and support root ball. Form a saucer, to capture water, around the outer rim of the planting hole with the soil mixture. The saucer should be completely above grade. Water immediately after planting by filling the entire saucer twice within 24 hours to ensure thorough saturation of the root ball. If your plant is on the larger size it may need staking. Mulch the entire saucer and top of the root ball with 2-3" of organic mulch (Cedar, Pine Bark or Hemlock).
Installing B&B Trees & Shrubs
Dig the hole at least 12" wider than the diameter of the root ball, and deep enough to allow 1/8 of the root ball to remain above grade. The perimeter of the bottom of the hole should be deeper than the center. This provides a solid plateau of undisturbed soil for the root ball to rest on. Where poorly drained or compacted soil exists, elevate the root ball 1/3 above grade. Mix 2/3 of your excavated soil thoroughly with 1/3 peat moss (or preferred amendment). Carefully place root ball into the hole. Be sure the plant is centered and upright. The center of the root ball should be resting on firm undisturbed soil. Backfill halfway with the soil mixture. Tamp the soil firmly to provide adequate support of the root ball. Water thoroughly to fill in air pockets and allow the soil mixture to settle. Remove all strings, plastic, burlap, etc. from the top half of the root ball. Be sure nothing is around the truck. Do not remove the wire basket if one is present. Backfill the remaining soil mixture and tamp firmly. Do not cover the top of the root ball with soil. Form a saucer, to capture water, around the outer rim of the planting hole with the soil mixture. The saucer should be completely above grade. Water immediately after planting by filling the entire saucer twice within 24 hours to ensure thorough saturation of the root ball. Stake all large shrubs and trees to stabilize the root ball. Stakes should extend 18" into firm, existing soil (this step is optional). Mulch the entire saucer and top of root ball with 2-3" of organic mulch (Cedar, Pine Bark, or Hemlock).
Watering your New Plantings
The most important part when establishing any new planting is to pay attention to your investment. Proper planting and care will ensure years of enjoyment. Check your plants regularly and note any changes. Sometimes a plant may "look" like it needs water when in fact it doesn't. If in doubt reach in and feel the soil!
Trees: Large trees need to be watered slowly at the base. Use a soaker hose or trickle system. Water from anywhere between 2-4 hours depending upon the size of the tree and the time of the year. For a trickle system, simply place the end of your hose at the base of the tree. Be sure it is about 4" away from the trunk. Turn the water on to a slow trickle and allow watering for 2-4 hours. During the spring and fall, watering once or twice a week should be sufficient. During the summer three times a week may be necessary. Check your tree(s) regularly. Remember rainfall amounts also. If in doubt, feel the soil beneath the tree.
Shrubs: Large B&B shrubs should be watered using the same system as above. For smaller shrubs, water by hand using a hose or watering can. Water at the base of the shrub and ensure the entire root ball is saturated. Since the root ball is smaller it will tend to dry out sooner than larger plants. Check your plants regularly. Remember rainfall amounts, time of year and plant exposure. Plants installed in full sun will need more water than those planted in a shadier spot. Be sure the check them regularly.
Perennials: New perennials need to be checked daily. Water them by hand using a hose or watering can. Perennials typically have a small root base and can dry out (or drown) much easier than larger plants. Take care when establishing them. If in doubt feel the soil beneath them. If the soil is cool and moist, wait another day before watering. If it feels dry, water it!
Annuals Planted in the Ground: For the first 2-3 weeks water by hand regularly. If you have an irrigation system, it should be sufficient to water in new annuals. Keep in mind that plants installed in full sun will require more water than those in shadier areas. After about 1 month you should be able to cut back on watering, especially with decent rainfall (an inch a week is great!). Remember to water deeply to establish a deep root base. Watering lightly everyday will cause the roots to remain in the top 2-3" of soil. While watering once or twice a week deeply will cause the roots to reach deeper into the soil in order to find moisture.
Container Plantings: Mixed containers need to be checked daily. Feel the soil to determine if they need watering. Wilted plants undergo stress and will not perform at their best. Each plant in a mixed container needs water and nutrients. Use a liquid fertilizer when watering every 10-14 days. Container plantings need supplemental watering all season long.
All trees, shrubs, and perennials take root at different rates. Please check your plantings regularly!