How to plant fruit trees bare root

Planting Bare-Root Fruit Trees - UC Master Gardener Program of Sonoma County

Planting bare-root while a tree is dormant is the method of choice for gardeners to optimize strong growth from a fruit tree’s young age. As roots break out of their restful state, they begin taking up water and nutrients for a burst of spring growth. Because they’ve never been in a container, these young roots have not suffered from circled conditions, are often more fibrous, and trees always cost less.

Preparing the Site

  • Select a site in full sun, 6-8 hours a day, where there is ample space for a tree’s mature size.
  • Keep in mind that promoting strong root growth and tree health begins at planting time. The goal is to encourage roots to grow out of the planting hole and into the surrounding native soil with no amendment materials inside the planting hole.
  • Dig a hole 2-3 times as wide as the roots will extend but only to the same depth as the longest root. A shallow hole prevents the tree from sinking too low.
  • Build a cone in the center of the hole with the excavated soil, leaving ample space all around where all of the roots will spread. The top of the cone must not be below the soil surface, preferably 2-3 in. above to allow for settling.
  • Where heavy soil threatens fast drainage, prepare to plant on a low mound. Begin by digging a shallower hole so that the cone extends 4-6 in. above the surface.

Planting the Tree

  • Plan in advance to remove roots from packaging material and rehydrate. Soak them in a container for at least 1 hour or up to 24 hours.
  • Trim off any diseased, kinked, or broken roots with a sharp tool.
  • Place the trunk on top of the cone with the bud union or graft facing north to avoid sun-scald. Look for a small jog on the lower stem, often where the trunk joins the roots, sometimes several inches higher up.
  • Fan out roots over the soil cone, cover halfway with the excavated soil, and water gently.
  • Take care that no part of the stem will be covered with soil—only the roots.
  • Finish filling the hole and tamp the soil lightly to eliminate any air pockets around the root ball. Water immediately but gently. If the soil cone and stem have settled below grade level, gently tug the stem to lift it slightly and continue covering roots.
  • If additional soil is needed, especially when mound-planting, mix one part native soil with an equal part of any amended soil to cover roots.
  • Scoop out a shallow, narrow moat around the planted area, about 8-12 in. from the trunk. Use this soil to finish covering roots if needed.
  • This moat, or ring, should be as far from the trunk as the tips of the roots extend. When filled, water will filter down where fibrous roots will absorb it. Do not allow the root ball to dry out.
  • Cover the exposed surface area with compost or other mulching material, leaving a 3-6 in. area exposed around the trunk to prevent moisture from rotting the crown.

Preparing for New Growth

  • When installing drip irrigation, place emitters in the same area as the watering moat and, in subsequent years, gradually move them farther away from the trunk as roots expand.
  • For convenience in future pruning, thinning, pest management and harvest, trim the trunk after planting—or head it back—to about knee height or 18-24 in. from the ground. Be sure to remove at least 1/3 of the original trunk height.
  • Remove any spindly branches that remain but leave any ¼ in. or larger equally placed around the trunk and reduce them to 2-3 buds. These will become main scaffold or structural branches.
  • New branches will grow the following spring.
  • To protect a young tree from sunburn, paint the trunk with a 1:1 mixture of white latex interior paint and water. This paint needs to be applied from 2 inches below the soil line to two feet up the trunk.

Additional Information

  • http://ipm.

February 2022

Planting Bare-Rooted Fruit Trees

, written by Jeremy Dore

As a child I grew up in a house named The Orchard and although the land had long since been sold off several large apple trees remained which gave us a reasonable harvest each year. I have fond memories of the delicious fruit pies and crumbles my mother used to prepare. Growing fruit is one of the most efficient forms of gardening – once the trees are established you can expect an abundant supply for decades with only a little pruning and mulching to keep them happy.

Without doubt, the cheapest way to start a mini-orchard is to buy bare-rooted plants: those sold without a pot and delivered while the weather is still cold and the plants are dormant. As well as saving money, you will often find a much wider selection of varieties and sizes available as bare-rooted trees. Many wonderful types of apples, pears, plums etc can be grown by the home gardener that are never available in supermarkets and the trees can be trained to fit the area you have (see our articles on Choosing Apple Trees and Apple Pollination Groups for more information)

Bare-rooted trees need to be planted correctly and given careful treatment during the first year in order to establish healthy root systems and give a reliable harvest.


Getting sufficient water and nutrients in the first few months after planting is essential and that’s why the timing is crucial. The number one priority is helping your new tree establish a healthy root system. The best time to plant bare-rooted trees is towards the end of winter or the first half of spring, once the ground is no longer frozen so it can be easily dug but before new growth starts.

It’s worth consulting a tree nursery that knows your area and can advise on the window of time when they lift the young plants and deliver them and when conditions are right for your area. In the mild maritime climate where I live, trees can be planted from November onwards and this gives them a few extra weeks for the roots to establish but in harsher areas you’ll want to wait until spring. You will need to plant them quickly once they arrive – usually within a couple of days, though it’s possible to pack the roots with moist earth to extend this period if conditions outside aren’t favorable.

If you miss the ideal window of time for your area but still want to plant this year, it’s worth paying more for container-grown plants. These will already have roots that have grown into the soil around them and as long as you don’t disturb these too much when planting, they’ll be ready to draw up moisture and nutrients during warmer weather.

Location, Location, Location

Fruit trees don’t like to be moved so it is important to get the location right first time. Things to consider are:

  • Sun or Partial Shade: Nearly all fruit trees require plenty of sun but by carefully scouring catalogs you’ll find there are some less well-know varieties that are tolerant of partial shade. Don’t just consider the ground – it’s the leaves that need sun and this often opens up possibilities for otherwise unproductive areas.
  • Soil: Check our GrowGuides for which soil the fruit tree requires. Most will want free-draining soil, enriched with compost. Avoid areas that regularly flood or higher ground that dries out quickly.
  • Wind and Snow: Be aware of the direction of prevailing wind and any large buildings nearby. A wall or fence may create a sheltered environment perfect for heat-loving fruits, or it could funnel icy winds during winter. Roofs can dump a ton of snow on an unsuspecting tree below, snapping its branches. Observe your garden closely to choose the best spot.
  • Other Plants: Trees are remarkably good at drawing up nutrients and water from the surrounding area. Unless you’re using raised beds, remember that a nearby fruit tree or bush may compete with your other plants.

Planting Tips

Many good fruit-tree suppliers will sell reasonably priced kits that include a stake, tie, mulch mat etc and I think it’s a false economy to skip these items.

Follow these simple steps to give your tree the best start:

  1. Dig a hole about a spade’s depth and around 3ft (1m) wide. A square hole is better than a round one as it encourages the roots to push out into the surrounding ground. Keep the soil you have removed in a wheelbarrow or on a large plastic sheet.
  2. Add a few inches of good garden compost and work it into the base of the hole using a garden fork. Mixing is important so that the tree’s roots don’t meet a sudden boundary between compost and regular soil. Also mix some compost into the soil you removed.
  3. Look for the slightly darker ‘watermark’ on the tree’s trunk that indicates where the soil level was when it was first grown. Place the bare-rooted tree in the centre of the hole and a cane across the hole so you can check that this line is level with the soil around your hole as trees shouldn’t be planted deeper or shallower than they were first grown. If necessary, add or remove soil to achieve this. Most fruit trees will be grafted onto a rootstock and the join should always be above ground.
  4. Remove the tree and put in a thick wooden stake a couple of inches from the centre of the hole and on the side where the prevailing wind comes from. Hammer this firmly into the ground using a mallet.
  5. Place the tree back in the hole close to the stake and start to shovel the soil-and-compost mix back around the roots. Gently firm this in with your boots, being careful not to damage the roots. When it’s half full, pull the tree up an inch and then let it drop again as this helps the soil to fill in around the roots.
  6. Once all the soil has been added and firmed, fix the tree to the stake with the tie, leaving enough room for the tree trunk to grow but not so much that it wobbles about. Also add a protective tube around the trunk if animals are a problem. At this stage I also sprinkle a little seaweed meal fertilizer around and cover it with a bio-degradable hemp mat to suppress weeds.
  7. Water the soil well to stop the roots drying out and to further settle the soil around them.

The First Year for Fruit Trees

Until the root system is at least as large as the tree it supports, the tree is particularly vulnerable to environmental stress. During the first year, the tree can easily die from not getting enough water or nutrients. Keep the tree well watered, especially during dry weather. A good soaking once or twice a week is much better than surface watering daily, though during very hot weather it can be worth doing both. It’s also vital to keep the area around the tree completely free of weeds and grass as they will compete with the young tree, which is why mulch mats are very effective.

Finally, don’t forget to remove all blossom from the tree in the first year. Although it’s tempting to let some fruit develop, doing so will again place more stress on the tree as it establishes and forgoing the first year’s fruit will result in a much healthier tree and better harvest in years to come.

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Apple (Dwarf) Grow Guide
Apple (Large) Grow Guide
Apple (Cordon) Grow Guide

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How to keep a seedling with an open root system until planting?


  • 1 Buy seedlings
  • 2 We save before planting
  • 3 Fruit bushes
  • 4 perennials
  • 5 How to save seedlings in open soil
    • 5. 1 Below other entries on the topic “How to do it with your own hands - household !"
    • 5.2 Subscribe to updates in our groups.
    • 5.3 Let's be friends!
  • 6 Storage of seedlings in the garden
  • 7 Features of storing seedlings in an apartment
  • 8 How to save seedlings of various garden plants

© Author: KONSTANTIN FIRSTOV, chief agronomist

Buying plants is a responsible business. Let's talk about that. what you need to pay attention to when choosing seedlings of fruit and ornamental trees and shrubs


We will learn how to choose, store and plant planting material in spring.

Seedlings grown in containers are the easiest to transplant, their root system is well developed, not disturbed, such plants quickly take root and grow. It turns out that we simply transship the plants: when we take them out of the container and plant them in the garden, we maintain the integrity of the root system.

Field-grown, nursery-grown seedlings are often packaged in film, after adding nutrient soil to the roots and forming a briquette, which is placed in a colorful package. The root system of such plants does not dry out, in this state the seedling can be stored for several months.

See also: Seedling storage - how to save until spring planting?

Fruit trees


Before buying a seedling, inspect it carefully.

He must be healthy, the bark must not be damaged. This is the first thing to pay attention to.

When buying during a frosty period, pay attention to the kidneys: they should be in a dormant state, and the seedling itself should not be overdried (which is well displayed on the bark, it becomes wrinkled, a slight crunch is heard when bent).

Shoots of a healthy seedling are elastic, easily bent, have an even bark color, buds are clearly visible.

Carefully inspect the grafting site: the fusion between the stock and the scion must be clean, with a characteristic scar .

Tops of seedlings can be trimmed - this is not a problem; form a new leader during the growing season, and in a year or two you will not see a cut point.

Buds on the sapling are allowed , in which case we can plant it immediately in a permanent place, and there is no need for storage.


Do not bring purchased seedlings into heat , this will only stimulate growth. Wrap them in a non-woven covering material and store them until planting in a cold room (ideally in a cellar, cold basement, garage, or even on a balcony).

Check the condition of the soil , do not let it dry out, moisten in time, but do not flood.

The seedling must be accompanied by a cultivar label attached to the seedling or to the container in which it was grown.

Before planting (or immediately after), protect the plant from sunburn;

Covering material or garden whitewash can be used.

Fruit shrubs

All seedlings of fruit shrubs (currant, gooseberry, raspberry, honeysuckle, blackberry ) grown in containers after purchase can be stored outdoors in the shade or in a cold room until planted in a permanent place.

Open root seedlings purchased from a nursery, immediately place in a bag, wrap the roots in cloth or paper, moisten and keep in the shade. On the garden plot, if the place for planting is not yet ready, dig the seedlings in the garden, sprinkle the roots with soil, and water well. Soaking such seedlings is not necessary; some people immerse them in a bucket of water - that's a mistake! An attempt to soak dried seedlings, of course, has the right to be, but in this case it is much more effective to cut the roots with a sharp pruner, shorten the shoots greatly, and then plant the plant in loose fertile soil and water it well.

Blackberry and raspberry seedlings should be chosen with care . Do not forget that the shoots of these crops live for two years. In the first year they gain vegetative mass, in the second year they bloom and produce berries, after which they dry up. Therefore, seedlings should be shoots of the first year, and they will give the first harvest only in the second year.


Perennial flowers are most often offered by sellers in spring. The desire to purchase a new variety is great, and already in February colorful packages appear. But it is still very early, and we do not understand what to do with them, how to save them until planting in the garden in April-May.

MODERN HYBRID iris varieties amaze the imagination with the shape and color of flowers (white, pink, raspberry, light blue, blue). Old varieties are often found on garden plots, many consider them almost weedy, they are often planted from the plot to the sides of garden roads; even discarded, they often take root, grow and bloom beautifully in wastelands.

Modern varieties, in contrast to the "indestructible" old ones, are often capricious, which undoubtedly pays off with their beauty.

In the spring, cutlets of the coveted rhizome appear on sale with one “blade” of leaves (this is how the fan of iris leaves is called). Carefully inspect the division: there should be no rot, sores and damage. Remember that it is better to dry this plant (even if the leaves are almost dry, they will endure it more easily) than to keep it very wet. Raw, it rots easily.

Damaged rhizomes of iris can be cured, rotten parts can be cut with a sharp knife to healthy tissue, and the cut can be powdered with crushed charcoal or treated with ordinary brilliant green, applying it to the cut with a cotton swab. Store the rhizomes in a cool, dry place, rarely lightly moistening to prevent drying out.

Daylilies and hostas have a well-developed root system, often with only one bud. Such delenki are most often in bags with holes for ventilation. Choose healthy specimens with well-formed buds. They need to be planted in peat pots and put in a cold room or in a cellar, periodically slightly moistening. And in the garden in a permanent place they can be planted together with a pot.

Hosta . Before buying, carefully consider the description of the variety. Pay attention to the size of the bush: the hosts are very different in leaf size - there are giants with a bush size of up to a meter, and there are babies whose bush is no more than 20 cm. Keep this in mind when planting in a permanent place.

Daylily . This plant, on the contrary, grows well in the sun - it practically does not bloom in deep shade and grows poorly. The varietal variety of this perennial captivates with a variety of colors, long flowering and unpretentiousness.


I want to pay attention to the lilac. There is an opinion that it is easy to propagate it - just dig up the shoots and plant.

But disappointment comes when the planted shoots bloom: instead of the desired variety, the most common lilac blooms. Here's the thing: varieties are often propagated by grafting, grafting varietal onto wild shoots - which blooms in you if you separate the shoots from it. Varietal lilacs have a weak root system, so it is advisable to propagate them by grafting, like apple trees, pears, plums.

Related Link: Selecting Quality Seedlings - Rootstock Types, Planting and Care

How to save seedlings before planting in open ground

Seedlings: how to choose and save them correctly. (02/11/16)

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How to save seedlings until planting tasha_jardinier April 19th, 2015

Have you bought seedlings with an open root system, but are not ready to plant yet? Try to properly store them before planting. The best option is to take it to the dacha and dig there. To do this, you need to choose a place where the sun almost does not look, there is no wind, but not a lowland where cold air accumulates. Don't have time to dig a trench? Well, fold the seedlings on even ground, if a lot, with a valet. Pour loose moist soil, stale sawdust on the root system. It is important that the roots are initially wet, but if they were poorly packed and dried out, then dip them in water for half an hour.

Throw a black dense non-woven fabric over the earth or sawdust, fasten it so that it does not blow away in the wind. Please note that only the roots should be covered, and the trunks and branches should be open to the light.

That's it, the seedlings are ready to wait for you to come and plant them.

Seedlings of grapes, apple trees, cherries, currants, and other plants are best planted in open ground in autumn, before the onset of the first cold weather. In the vast majority of cases, they survive the winter, adapt to extreme conditions and develop excellently from the next spring. But what if you purchased your planting material too late and would like to keep it until the first warm spring? You can find the answer to this question in our article.

Storing seedlings in the garden

If you live in a private house, you can store seedlings right on the street. Are you afraid that they will freeze already with the first frosts? We offer two equally simple and effective ways to protect them from the cold:

  • so-called snowing. This method allows you to store seedlings before planting in those regions of the country where snow lies all winter, where the height of its cover is at least 15 centimeters. Snow perfectly stores heat, so under it your future plants will be very comfortable. To ensure the most comfortable conditions for storage, it is enough, firstly, to dig the seedlings to a depth of 8-10 cm in the snow, and secondly, sprinkle them on top with approximately the same layer of sawdust. They will act as additional thermal insulation and prevent snow melting during short-term thaws. Finally, with such a protective layer, even strong temperature changes will not be afraid of plants;
  • If there is a problem with snow in your area, we suggest storing seedlings in a pit. It is a trench 60-70 centimeters deep and up to half a meter wide. The length depends on the plants that you intend to submerge under the soil layer. Be sure to make sure that the site is not at risk of high groundwater rise, that the roots will not rot due to high levels of moisture. You will also need to insulate the trench well - for this purpose, we recommend using branches of pine or other coniferous plants, moss or sawdust. If the trench is built on heavy soils, it is better to lighten them by mixing with peat and sand. This will reduce the load on the seedlings and make it easy to remove them before planting.

See also: How to wash a jacket at home

Before immersing plants in snow or an earthen trench, they must be carefully prepared. To do this, the following procedures are carried out:

  • removal of excess, as well as diseased leaves;
  • immersion of the roots in clean water for 3-5 hours so that they are saturated with moisture;
  • removal of dead sections of the root system.

Do you have any possibility to store plants before planting in your garden? Then we offer to create the most comfortable conditions for them right in an ordinary city apartment

Features of storing seedlings in an apartment

Where can planting material be stored in an apartment? For this purpose, a refrigerator is excellent, which will not allow the root system to dry out and provide ideal conditions for the plant to survive the winter and be perfectly preserved until planting. This method imposes some restrictions on the size of seedlings, so it can not be used for all fruit trees and shrubs.

Preparation of a vine or sprout for cold storage is carried out in several steps:

  • we prepare several (according to the number of seedlings) plastic bags, and also purchase a nutrient substrate for seedlings in any specialized store;
  • steam the composition and cool it well to room temperature;
  • we immerse the plant in a bag and gradually add the substrate there so that it completely occupies the space between the roots;
  • moisten the composition and tightly tie the bag. A little later, you will need to make several holes in the cellophane to ensure proper ventilation and prevent root rot;
  • we place the package in the so-called "freshness zone" of the refrigeration unit or simply on the lower shelf, where the temperature is stable 2-5 degrees above zero.

Great if you have a garage with a cellar or a glazed (but not insulated) balcony. In this case, you will be able to ensure efficient storage of large seedlings of fruit trees.

The main task of cold exposure is to prevent early awakening and bud break. Check them regularly.

How to save seedlings of various garden plants

The above methods are universal and allow you to efficiently store seedlings of various plants purchased in autumn or winter before planting. But still, each of them has its own characteristics, which we will describe in this article:

  • fruit trees are best kept in a cellar, and not in a pit or snow pit - so you can constantly monitor the state of their root system. If immediately after the purchase you find a strong drying of the roots, be sure to moisten them by soaking them in clean water for several hours. In addition, you need to regularly moisten the substrate, at least once every two weeks, check if the buds are blooming;
  • grape seedlings are very demanding on the ambient temperature. At zero degrees, their roots can simply dry out, and at +5 degrees, the awakening process already begins. Therefore, the temperature will have to be carefully monitored. It is best to organize the storage of the vines on the balcony or in the basement in specially prepared containers with the same nutrient substrate or in plastic bags. In addition to the mixture, you need to add moistened sand, which provides the necessary air flow to the root system. Let's open a little secret - in order to maintain the optimal temperature and humidity level, you can lay a small snowball on the surface of the substrate. It will melt very slowly, creating suitable conditions for the plant and eliminating its premature awakening.

Rose seedlings are also quite capricious, which are not recommended to be planted in open ground until the real spring heat comes. We recommend storing them until planting in several ways already known to you, but with some adjustments:

  • if you are equipping a dig, the presence of snow cover is also very important. In this case, sprouts are placed in a pit prepared in advance and insulated with needles and sprinkled with a nutrient substrate. To keep the plant warm, a spunbond layer is placed on top, which at the same time will maintain a normal level of humidity;
  • to ensure efficient cold storage, all you have to do is keep a close eye on the roots. They must be constantly moistened so as not to dry out and die before planting;
  • if the plant does wake up and put out leaves, the only way to keep it until transplanted into the open ground is to place it in special containers with loose soil. At the same time, it is important to place the containers in a dark room (to prevent premature growth) with a temperature of at least +10 degrees and pack well in cellophane film. In addition, the root system must be constantly moistened. But it is important not to overdo it so that the roots do not rot before planting.

Effective storage of seedlings, especially in winter, is quite difficult. However, if you use our tips, you can easily cope with the solution of this problem. At the same time, you do not need to regularly monitor the plants - just look at them once every 1-2 weeks to ensure optimal conditions.

See also: How to clean a cast iron skillet from soot

Regardless of which of the above storage methods you choose, it is important to monitor the condition of the sprouts or vines. Do not let them bloom prematurely, try to create conditions to slow down growth as much as possible if it was not possible to prevent the emergence of leaves, and also maintain optimal temperature and humidity levels. All this will allow you to plant a plant in open ground, which will be accepted without problems and will develop normally throughout the first year.

Hello, dear gardeners, gardeners and florists! Spring, you all get some plants, some of you have marked the way to one garden center, someone has marked the way to some nursery, but be sure, I beg you, I just beg you, buy perennial plants only in good firms, only in good shops, only in good nurseries! In no case do not allow yourself to buy plants somewhere on the roads from some random sellers. You can lose not only money, time, strength, but also nerves.

How to save tree and shrub seedlings before planting in open ground

So, you have purchased a one-year-old seedling, for example, an apple tree. It should look something like this. An annual seedling is literally a twig. If a few lateral shoots suddenly form on a seedling, then this is already a two-year-old seedling. Of course, in such packaging it is not entirely clear what is there, what are the roots, but, nevertheless, firms do not compromise themselves, therefore, as a rule, they make good packaging, as you see in this case. There is a substrate, the roots are clearly moistened, the substrate is moist - now we will make sure - well wrapped. See what kind of substrate? Wet. Here I touch with my finger - the finger gets dirty. We must open it, and before planting it is already in the garden - and it is still too early to plant, we still cannot prepare holes, because the soil is frozen - during this time we must help the plant at least a little. We will take it and plant it in some kind of container, in a pot. Do not keep it somewhere in the bathroom or in the kitchen on the floor, but take this plant of yours and take it out to the balcony. On the balcony, it will continue to rest wonderfully. You see, the kidneys are still sleeping. And at this time, you should try to choose a plant with dormant buds, so that the buds are pressed, the tissues of the shoots are elastic. So they must bend. It means that the plant is perky, pretty, the kidneys are plump.

Checking the condition of the trunk of a purchased tree or shrub sapling

Here is our root system. It often happens that the manufacturer twists the roots when they are too large. And we see with you that the tip of the spine is white. This means that the plant has already come to life, which means that it is about to start growing. And once in such a container as it was, it is clear that this apple tree can simply die, despite the fact that you buy a good product.

Here we freed the roots a little from the substrate, gave them freedom. For such a root system, such a two-liter capacity will suffice. You can pour drainage, or you may not pour it, because if you pour drainage, it will be cramped for the root system. Therefore, it's okay, for a month and a half, this plant will simply stay with us in a new container with careful watering, maybe even have to feed the plant a little. We cover the soil. But what kind of soil? You can take, for example, such soil - garden soil, or universal soil prepared in advance by us, where we have earth from the garden, and river sand, and very good peat, and perlite, vermiculite. So the soil - just sit down and grow itself.

Checking the condition of the roots of a purchased tree or shrub sapling

So, you and I take a little bit of soil on the bottom - we always have to do this - so that the bottom is not bare, and the roots do not immediately lie on the bottom. We sprinkle our plant with this our earth. You can use good purchased land, but not peat. Dear friends, please do not buy these peat pillows that are on sale. The soil will definitely either dry up or get wet, there will not be enough nutrition, or, conversely, the nutrition will be so unevenly supplied to the roots - either thick or empty - and this will not make them feel good, these roots will die. So you can even alternate your land with purchased land - a handful of one soil, a handful of another. The soil should have a reaction somewhere around 5.5-6. This is a very good reaction. So we compact the soil, especially around the perimeter. We spill a clod of earth, actively water the soil so that it is pressed against the roots. The roots will immediately feel the moisture, begin their work. Let's sip a little more. But there is no need to rush the plant, no need to wake up ahead of time. If there is some kind of cold, rather bright room, then it will be fine for you to stay in it. No need to rush. Why? Because sometimes plants wake up early. It would seem that in May you can already plant it, it is already with leaves, but these leaves are not needed, because there may be frosts, and frosts will definitely destroy these leaves, and you will have to cover these plants. Therefore, do not wake up your plants ahead of time.

Transplanting a seedling into a seedling container

Thus, we watered, temporarily planted. Again, the root system, growing in this pot, covering this new soil, feeding on good elements that we can include in 1-2 waterings, say mineral fertilizers ... Every third watering we apply mineral fertilizers. Be sure to use an annotation. You don't need much. A little less is better than more. And be sure to try to treat the plant from diseases and pests during this period before planting. There are a lot of drugs now. From diseases, as a rule, these are copper-containing preparations, from pests you will find these preparations everywhere in the markets and in stores, ask if they are good universal preparations so that you do not bring any infection into your garden.

Dear friends, I wish you all the best, great success and the acquisition of wonderful seedlings.

Candidate of Agricultural Sciences Nikolai Petrovich Fursov.

Date of publication: Planting in open ground

Secrets of summer planting of seedlings with closed and open root systems. Photo — Botanichka

“Each vegetable has its own time”, and each plant has its own optimal time for planting. Anyone who has experience with planting is well aware that the hot season for planting is spring and autumn. This is due to several factors: in spring, the plants have not yet started to grow rapidly, there is no sweltering heat, and precipitation often falls. However, no matter how hard we try, circumstances often develop in such a way that landings have to be carried out at the very height of summer. The success of such work largely depends on the type of planting material and on the use of special agricultural practices that facilitate the survival of plants in a new place. How to make sure that the landing takes place with minimal risks, you will learn from our article.

Secrets of summer planting of seedlings

Summer planting of seedlings with an open root system (OCS)

This type of planting material has the shortest period of implementation. Decent nursery owners stop selling dug up seedlings of fruit and ornamental crops as soon as leaves begin to bloom on them, and they dig in unsold planting material.

This is due to the fact that the root, deprived of soil, ceases to work fully. At the same time, the plant spent the last of its strength on bud break, young leaves will require enhanced nutrition and moisture, but the dug seedling will not be able to provide its aerial part with everything necessary. This situation is very stressful and can lead to the death of the plant.

However, we often see many seedlings with bare roots, on which the foliage turns green, in the malls. Sometimes a similar picture can be observed even at the end of May-beginning of June, despite the fact that the deadline for the sale of seedlings with ACS is the end of April (or the beginning of May - with a cold late spring).

Sellers sell their wares at bargain prices, and some gardeners may be tempted to buy new seedlings (almost for nothing). But is it worth it?

Theoretically, there is always a chance to save any, even the most tortured plant, but still it is better to refuse such purchases. If, however, you did purchase a seedling with bare roots out of season, then it will take a lot of time and effort to try to help it take root in a new place.

These seedlings will develop small defective leaves in the first year. If the adaptation procedure was successful, then the next season the crown will take on a healthy appearance. However, be prepared for the fact that the seedling will stand idle all summer with underdeveloped foliage (neither alive nor dead), and next spring it simply will not come out of winter.

Basic measures to save a seedling with an open root system planted in summer :

  • Regular watering, preferably with the addition of preparations that promote the formation of young roots (for example, "Kornevin"). But it is impossible to overdo it in this matter, since excessive moisture can lead to the development of fungal diseases or even root rot.
  • The root zone should be covered with mulching material to reduce moisture evaporation (straw, compost, fallen needles, etc.).
  • Installation of a shade screen to protect from direct sunlight. It can be built from cardboard or a special shading net can be purchased.
  • Spraying the crown with an anti-stress preparation (Epin-extra, Zircon, HB-101).
Rose seedling with an open root system (OCS). © amityheritageroses

Planting Closed Rooted Seedlings (CCS) in Summer

Theoretically, seedlings with a closed root system do not have a limited planting time, they can be planted throughout the warm season, and landscape designers, using such planting material, successfully implement their projects all summer. However, this rule only applies to seedlings that were originally grown in containers and were not placed there immediately before being sold.

Plants with STD are available in nurseries from spring to autumn, and there is always an opportunity to purchase a new plant for planting in the garden. But is it so easy for seedlings to take root in the height of summer?

Of course, seedlings from containers have minimal damage to the root system. By the way, you can often find recommendations when planting container plants to destroy the root ball and straighten tangled roots. But when landing in the summer, it is better to abandon these activities so as not to injure the roots. Do not be afraid, the plant itself will be able to figure out that it has fallen into more spacious conditions and will begin to grow in breadth.

Nevertheless, in any case, the plants will find themselves in new conditions to which they will have to adapt and they will need help. Look at the flower gardens in the summer heat, often even the most resistant plants drop their leaves and look oppressed, while the new settlers will also have to expend energy to adapt to the changed living conditions.

In nurseries, all planting material is often protected from direct sunlight by a special shade canopy so that the containers do not dry out too quickly. Getting into a flower garden or on a bed with open sun in the summer heat, the seedling can get severe burns or completely “burn out”.

From this follows the first rule for planting seedlings with ZKS in the summer : be sure to shade the plantings. For this purpose, for small plants, you can build a special hut from a shading net or the thinnest white non-woven material. At the same time, such a design must necessarily be well purged with air, otherwise, in the summer heat, the seedlings can simply “cook” in such “greenhouses”.

It is possible to remove shading only after young leaves begin to actively grow in new settlers, and turgor is fully restored in old leaves. Shade-tolerant plants that are planted in semi-shady corners can not be shaded.

Often we also receive seedlings with a closed root system by mail, and then even at the beginning of summer you can be surprised to find a seedling with unopened buds in the parcel due to the fact that the plants were stored in cool conditions.

If the buds on the shrub have not yet blossomed, then after planting it is better not to shade the plants so that the young leaves prepare themselves for the level of illumination that they will meet. Otherwise, foliage that has blossomed under shading may subsequently get burned.

The second rule of is to choose the right weather for landing. The calendar summer is different, and sometimes it happens that June is colder than May, and then there should not be any problems with the survival of plants with ZKS. Sometimes summer rains are replaced by the sun, only briefly refreshing the earth with moisture.

But it often happens that in the middle of summer there is a real rainy season, when precipitation falls daily for one or two weeks. If you are planning a summer planting or transplanting of plants, then it is better to study the weather forecast and wait for the arrival of such a rainy period, because cloudy and damp cool weather greatly contributes to the good survival of seedlings.

Third rule : regular abundant watering. Well-rooted plants are able to survive a short drought. Even if the leaves partially fade from lack of moisture, most likely the plant will be able to recover.

But the new settlers have a hard time. Even if you have planted plants that are famous for their drought tolerance, they also need abundant watering at first. This will allow the roots to get used to the new soil better, and the root coma to become one with the local soil.

Plants must be watered daily for at least a week to establish successfully. Watering with preparations to improve root formation and anti-stress agents is also welcome. But it is impossible to fertilize planted plants. In any case, the roots could get microtraumas and mineral fertilizer can cause them to burn, and the new settlers will not be able to fully assimilate the fertilizer, since all the forces of the plant are thrown into adaptation.

With proper care, seedlings with a closed root system, planted in summer, take root perfectly

Summer plantings of large-sized plants with a clod of earth

Along with plants with ZKS in summer, you can always find seedlings of fruit and ornamental crops in clods for sale in nurseries. As a rule, these are adult specimens that reach several meters in height and are often used in the work of landscape designers.

Such plants can be saved and planted in a new place thanks to the use of special technologies. In early spring, before the leaves bloom, the seedlings are dug up with specialized equipment that preserves the earthen ball with minimal damage to the roots.

To prevent the root ball from crumbling during long-term storage, the root system is tightly wrapped in burlap. For very large trees, in addition to burlap, a metal mesh is also additionally used, which will protect the root ball from destruction during transportation.

Prior to sale, plants with a root ball are watered with drip irrigation or placed in wet sawdust. During the summer, seedlings prepared in this way grow and develop well. Thanks to this, it is possible to assess the state of the plant and evaluate the decorative state of the culture.

Summer planting of these large plants is in most cases successful and virtually painless, since most of the roots are kept inside a well-packed clod. When planting seedlings in clods at a new place of residence, it is not necessary to unpack the root ball. Burlap is a natural material that will quickly decompose in the ground, and a metal mesh will not prevent the growth of roots, and will disintegrate in the soil after a few years.

Summer planting of large-sized earthen clods in most cases is successful and almost painless. © Better Homes and Gardens

Benefits of planting seedlings in summer

So, in summary, let's sum up what plants can be planted in a new place in summer:

  • during the summer it is permissible to plant large plants with a specially prepared root ball;
  • seedlings of fruit and ornamental crops with a closed root system.

The procedure will also be successful if you transplant small plants inside your own garden or from neighbors, with a large clod of earth. It is better to choose plants that are not currently in bloom, but have already faded in the spring months, or will bloom in the fall.

Advantages of planting seedlings in summer:

In the summer, you can see the "goods face" and fully appreciate the decorative qualities of the plant. After all, it often happens that a flower is incredibly spectacular in photographs, but in reality it makes a completely different impression. And vice versa, a plant that does not stop the eye in the catalog will appear in all its glory in a good company and you will certainly want to put it in the garden.

Growers often make mistakes with planting density and plant young rosettes too close or, on the contrary, at too great a distance. With a summer purchase, you get a well-developed plant that allows you to determine the optimal distance between new specimens and neighboring plantings.

In early spring it is not always easy to determine if the planting material is alive and budding. In summer, you can always choose a guaranteed live plant with good foliage and maximum decorative effect.

In the summer, there is no rush of garden work in the spring, and you can calmly and unhurriedly plan the garden, choose the best place for the plant, go to the nursery and purchase planting material.

There are no crowds in garden shops, nurseries and market stalls, and you will have a good view of the whole range of plants. And you don't have to stand in line to buy.

Compared to autumn planting, seedlings have more time to root and bud for the coming season. Most often, summer-planted plants overwinter better and develop faster in the following summer than those planted in autumn.

Optimal time for planting

And in conclusion, a few words about what period will be the most optimal for planting seedlings.

The optimal time for planting seedlings of fruit and ornamental trees and shrubs with an open root system is two to three weeks before the first autumn frosts. These dates vary depending on the region, and it can be either the end of September or mid-late October.

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