Years ago we had donated money to the Arbor Day Foundation and received in the mail ten trees. Rather, ten sticks. I didn’t know a darn thing about raising trees and have killed many over my years, I am afraid. Well, those first ten were subject to neglect and the lawn mower.
Ten trees…sticks…arrived in the mail from Arbor Day the other day. Ten more are arriving next week. 3 Dogwoods, 2 Redbuds, 2 Crepe Myrtles, 2 Crabapples, and 2 Hawthorns (the primary ingredient in my heart medicine) were carefully planted in the yard.
Dig a hole at least a foot and half wide (so that grass and weeds can’t sneak up on the tree) and a foot and a half down. Any lower and you might lose the tree! They aren’t very big but they are trees and the Arbor Day will send you ten with a ten dollar donation and that is a great deal for everyone. They catch up to their older, potted cousins within a few years and will be stronger because they started so young and they will adapt to the soil they are put in.
One huge mistake I have made in the past was using compost or potting soil to fill the hole. The tree just wants regular dirt! Fill the hole back with the dirt that was in there. The sticks soaked in a vase for a few hours to absorb water. Draw a two inch reservoir a foot away from and around the tree base. Fill with water. Put a tomato cage over it so you won’t hit it with the lawn mower! (and you will remember where you put the sticks.) Mulch, leaving base clear, with leaves or straw, or the like. Water occasionally through winter.
This is the first house we have bought in a long time and we are thrilled that this time we will actually be able to enjoy the trees we plant this year! Time flies and it won’t be long before the trees are large and beautiful.
“The best time to plant a tree was twenty years ago. The second best time is now.” Chinese Proverb