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Unleashing Your Green Thumb: 9 Easy Steps to Grow a Tree

Unleashing Your Green Thumb: 9 Easy Steps to Grow a Tree

Have you ever considered the charm and benefit a single tree could bring your life? Planting a tree in your yard is more than just an aesthetic decision. It’s a future investment. Imagine having a tree that shades your home, reduces energy bills, or even becomes a favorite hangout spot for your kids or grandkids. It could even become an integral part of a tag game. Meanwhile, it’s purifying your air and bringing nature closer to home. 

So, let’s embark on a journey where we’ll take you through nine simple steps to plant a tree in North Carolina so your tree gets the best start possible.

9 Easy-Peasy Steps to Grow a Tree

Enhancing your home or business landscape can be as easy as planting a tree. Following these easy steps, you can grow a tree that will mature with your family or business, providing you with years of pleasure.

1. Finding the Perfect Tree and Spot for it

The key to growing a healthy tree is selecting the right tree that thrives in the climate and region of North Carolina. Also, consider the mature height and root system size of the tree. You wouldn’t want to plant a tree that grows into power lines, interferes with sidewalks, or encroaches on your neighbor’s property, would you? So, ensure ample room for its mature canopy and root system.

2. Digging the Perfect Hole

Ready to dig in? Aim for a square hole rather than a round one. The depth of the Hole should match the root ball’s height, maybe an inch more, but not too deep, as it’s a leading cause of newly planted trees not surviving. Expand the sides of the Hole to about three times the diameter of the root ball. Remember to measure the Hole again before moving on to the next step.

3. Trimming the Tree

Some trees, especially the ones sitting for too long in a retail nursery, might have dead roots or branches. If you notice such, trim them carefully to give your new tree a fighting chance at survival.

4. Moving the Tree to the Hole

When moving the tree to the Hole, handle it by its root ball or container, not by the trunk. Once it’s positioned, gently remove as much burlap or other foreign material as possible. Ensure the top of the root ball is level with the ground.

5. Backfilling

Now, it’s time to add the soil you dug out back into the Hole. Avoid tamping down or packing it, as it can damage the delicate roots. The first watering (step 8) will help the soil to settle in. And remember, use only the same soil you dug out, and hold off any fertilizers or soil amendments for now.

6. Staking the Tree

In the early stages, staking your tree provides stability. But remember, this is a temporary measure and should be kept for a maximum of a year. If you decide to stake it, ensure it goes far deeper than the root ball without damaging it. When attaching, allow the tree some wiggle room to sway in the wind.

7. Mulching the Area

A very crucial step, mulching helps retain moisture when you water. But overdoing it or covering the trunk can trap excess moisture, creating a perfect ground for disease and decay. Think of it as creating a moat around a castle, designed to keep the moisture within the roots’ reach.

8. Watering the Tree

Aim for a good soaking rather than frequent sprinkles for the first watering. Water your tree weekly with about 6-8 gallons per inch of trunk diameter for the first couple of years. After a few years, unless there’s a drought, you can taper off watering the tree.

9. Building a Protective Barrier

Critters like rodents or deer might find your young tree particularly appealing. To protect it, consider building a barrier around the tree until it becomes more established. The most common materials for this purpose are hog wire or mesh placed around stakes beyond the root ball.

You might also like Evergreen Transplantation Guide.

Looking After Your New Tree

While it’s generally not advised to fertilize your tree in its first year, you should mark your calendar for routine maintenance tasks like checking mulch and drainage, inspecting for pests and diseases, removing stakes and barriers, and of course, some timely fertilizing as your tree matures. Let the tree from Earthworks Tree Services thrive and enhance the beauty of your surroundings. Happy planting!

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