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Planting a Tree the Right Way in Clarence

Planting a Tree the Right Way in Clarence

Tree Planting 1

Don’t let your trees’ life be cut short! Plant them correctly during the spring and fall for a longer, healthier life. With just a few simple steps you can guarantee that your tree will flourish through many seasons of growth. So learn these steps now and witness the beauty of its extended existence in years to come!

If you’re looking to plant a tree, this is the article for you! We’ll provide step-by-step instructions on how wide and deep your hole should be dug, what to use as backfill (and what not to do), whether or not it’s important to stake your tree, the best thing that can be done right after planting has been completed, and tips on ensuring that it gets enough water.

The Necessary Steps for Creating a Planting Hole for Your Tree!

When digging a hole for your new tree, two factors are of utmost importance: width and depth. This precise excavation creates the base from which your tree will grow and flourish.


When planting, be sure to create a hole that is two to three times the width of your tree’s rootball. This helps ensure that the soil around it will remain loose and well-draining (especially important if you have clay soil), free from rocks and debris, as well as easy for necessary amendments or other modifications – all before backfilling! Mix any changes into the dirt evenly with your shovel so everything is good to go.


When you’re planting your new tree, make sure that the depth of the hole is exactly equal to its rootball size. You don’t want it going any deeper than that! This will ensure a solid and stable foundation for your tree so it does not sink down in time. If by chance you have dug a little too deep, no need to worry—just fill the extra space with soil and tamp it firmly until its height reaches up to match your tree’s rootball size.

Plant at the Correct Depth

Planting trees the right way is crucial and involves more than meets the eye. The leading cause of tree demise? People planting them too deep! Thankfully, with a little knowledge you can ensure this will never happen to your trees – making it easy to prevent such an avoidable disaster for good.

Planting a tree correctly is essential for its success, and there’s no secret formula to guarantee it. Ensure that the wider base of your new tree trunk – known as “trunk flare” – sits slightly higher than the surrounding soil level. You should be able to clearly see where the root system begins near this point at the base of your tree; if you can’t, then you’ve planted too deeply!

Here’s a pro tip: Uncover the trunk flare of your new tree by cautiously pulling some soil away from its rootball. Many times, trees are planted too deeply in their nursery pot or burlapped rootball when they arrive at home.

Avoid This:

Planting your new tree in a low spot is risky since the pooled water can impact the rootball, and soil and mulch will wash down to cover up the trunk flare. This could result in destructive fungal growth, dangerous insect pests inhabiting it, or even killing off your tree altogether if left unchecked!

Replenishing the Planting Area

Planting a tree requires two people: one to hold the tree in place, and another to shovel soil around its rootball. So once you have placed your new sapling into its hole, it’s time to backfill with dirt that was previously excavated!

Should You Replenish The Filled-In Soil?

Amending backfilled soil is generally not a requirement, yet the response isn’t as straightforward as it may seem. If you’re reinforcing your garden soil with compost and mulch regularly, chances are that its composition has been improved to the extent where it can offer enough sustenance for a new tree’s needs – thus making amendments superfluous.

Before you consider amending your soil, question yourself: Are the other trees and shrubs in your landscape flourishing? If they aren’t fertilized on a regular basis yet remain healthy and growing well, it is likely that your soil already contains all of the nutrients needed by your plants. Additionally, will you be planting a tree native to the area? Trees habitually found in this region may favor current conditions over potential amendments.

The sole method to be certain whether your soil requires additives is by evaluating it. Although kits purchased at hardware stores are economical, they cannot guarantee precision or dependability. Be wary of fertilizing too much – you do not wish to overdo it!

Be sure to prevent air pockets from forming when planting.

When you fill the planting hole, be sure to do so evenly and methodically. If done haphazardly, it can lead to unhelpful air pockets in your soil. Air is a necessary component for roots growth and water drainage; however, undesired air pockets present an obstacle as they impede both of these processes! So make sure that you settle the soil around your new tree’s rootball appropriately – after all, this will ensure optimal conditions for its development as well as facilitate much needed airflow and liquid movement through your earth beddings.

To ensure the success of your new tree, take these steps:

  • Layer in soil gradually – Layer in soil and make sure to water it adequately so that air can escape as the soil settles. Do this until all of the backfill is complete.
  • Compress lightly – Afterwards, press down on the surface with a light step. Don’t trample or you will compact it too much and keep both moisture and oxygen from reaching its roots (which could lead to death).                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          
  • Water thoroughly – Give your newly transplanted tree a generous amount of H2O.

Do You Need to Stake a New Tree?

Whether or not it is necessary to stake newly planted trees depends on several considerations. Though, if done correctly and only for a period of 6-12 months after planting, staking can be highly beneficial to the majority of these saplings.

Size of the Crown

If your tree’s crown is too cumbersome or thick and its rootball is modest, it can more easily topple over in gale force winds until its roots become firmly rooted. To protect against such windy conditions, staking the tree would be wise.

Shape of the Tree

When a young tree is grown in close quarters and bound to nursery stakes, it often results in an overly tall yet skinny trunk. To prevent the newly-planted sapling from flopping over when these ties are removed, staking should be used as temporary support until its core grows greater and stronger. Oppositely, trees that appear short or broad typically need not worry about blowing over and therefore require no extra stabilization during planting.

Planting Location

For a tree planted in a protected spot, stakes may be unnecessary. Nevertheless, when the location is prone to windy conditions, staking is usually essential for its security.

Type of Rootball

As their rootball helps keep them upright, b&b trees with larger roots compared to those grown in containers often don’t require staking.

Staking a New Tree

  • If you must stake your tree, make sure to do it properly. Generally speaking, stakes should be two or three strong and large poles that are shoved into the soil outside of the rootball area (not within). Additionally, bind flexible ties securely around these stakes; they can even be nailed or screwed on for extra security. Once done with this step, loosely tie them around the trunk of your tree to ensure its stability during gusty winds.


  • Securing a tree’s safety can be achieved through driving three anchors into the ground and attaching them to a webbing of nylon, which is then linked with flexible ties around the trunk.

To keep your tree in place and prevent it from falling over, position the stakes so they don’t rub against any of its branches. Be sure to tie flexible ties at the lowest height possible and never secure a new tree directly to a stake. Remember that while you want your tree’s trunk to be stabilised, allowing it some movement is beneficial as this helps strengthen its structure without risking snapping due to excessive bending.

Remember, to avoid damage to your tree’s bark or trunk, never use rope, twine, metal wire or cable when tying it up. After six months of staking have elapsed and the tree is able to stand upright by itself, remove all stakes immediately. Prolonged periods of being staked can interfere with a tree’s natural growth pattern.

Mulching a New Tree

Adding an organic layer of mulch around your new planted tree is one of the most important steps you can take in its growth and development. Not only does it slow water evaporation from the soil, but also smothers weeds that could potentially obstruct needed nutrients for your tree’s growth. Additionally, this will help regulate extreme temperatures in the soil, creating a more balanced environment for optimal success!

To ensure optimal growth for your tree, create a protective layer of mulch by spreading a three- to four-inch layer around the trunk in a two to three feet diameter circle. The benefits are numerous: it prevents weeds from growing and water loss while promoting healthy root development. For lasting success, you’ll need to remember to regularly replenish the mulch so that your tree will be able to thrive!

Avoid this Mulching Mistake!

Never stack up mulch around the trunk of a tree – otherwise known as creating “mulch volcanoes” – no matter how often you may have seen it done in other places. These sorts of practices are actually one of the chief factors for trees dying prematurely. To learn more about when, why and how to correctly mulch your trees, click here.

Remember that each time you go to assess a tree, it’s essential to look out for its trunk flare (the area at the bottom feet mark where trunks widen out before transitioning into roots).

Gradually decrease the depth of mulch as you get closer to the tree trunk, and avoid placing any directly on top of it. Imagine making a “donut” shape around your tree with the mulch instead of creating an artificial volcano.

Watering the Tree

After you plant your tree, give it plenty of TLC. A new tree’s rootball is tiny and its only source for water, so make sure to quench its thirst! For the first few weeks, you’ll want to pour enough water on a daily basis that thoroughly moistens the soil below the surface. Afterwards, maintaining weekly watering will suffice throughout the entire growing season; remember: less can be more – when in doubt err on “low and slow” side as this encourages deep roots growth over time!

As the temperature dips and steady rainfalls become a more frequent occurrence in autumn, you can typically cease your watering until spring. However, if we experience an unseasonably warm spell during winter with no snow on the ground, it would be very beneficial to continue providing moisture for your new tree when possible.


You’ve planted a tree and nurtured it – now you can sit back and observe as your hard work pays off! Not only have you done something great for yourself, but also for songbirds, bees, butterflies and the environment at large. It’s gratifying to know that even with one small act of kindness you are making an impact on our world!

If you need our tree services, then please contact us for all your tree needs in Clarence and the surrounding areas!

Also check out our other articles such as tree removal preparations and cutting down a dying tree.