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What you need:
  • Shovel
  • Garden fork
  • 2 wooden stakes
  • Tree ties
  • Mulch
Use a shovel to mark the area you will be planting the tree in. The hole should be at least 2 times the diameter of the root system.
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Scarify the sides of the hole with a garden fork. This will help the roots expand into the surrounding soil.
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Build up a mound in the center of the hole. Next, pound 2 stakes into the ground on opposite sides of the mound. The stakes will support the tree while it is establishing itself over the next year.
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Spread the roots over the mound in the center of the hole. Use a dowel to gauge the proper planting depth. Plant the tree at the same depth as it was growing before. Add enough soil to the hole to support the tree and spray the area with water.
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Backfill more soil into the hole, and add more water. Repeat this step two or three times until the hole is filled in.
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Next, tamp down the soil with the back of your shovel to eliminate air pockets around the roots.
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If you have well draining soil or live in a dry area, create a water catching moat around the tree. If you have poorly draining soil or live in a wet area plant the tree on a slight mound so water drains away from the root ball. Fasten ties to the trunk of the tree. The ties will have to remain in place for the first year until the tree can support itself. The ties must not be too tight.
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Keep the soil around the tree moist for the next year or until it is well established. Water the tree well and apply 2-4" of mulch. The mulch should cover the entire planting area but should not touch the trunk of the tree.