Planting trees and Shrubs

When you are starting a new garden most people want to hide the fences. . . . I know I do.

That means you will be wanting to plant trees and shrubs.

Here is how to avoid two common mistakes.

Buy Smaller

It is temping to buy the largest size of the variety as it seems as though it will quickly make an impact.

There are two problems:

  • The larger shrubs will cost 2-3 times as much, which is significant if you are going to be buying lots.
  • Smaller and younger shrubs are generally more vigorous. I have found smaller shrubs can overtake a larger shrubs in a single growing season.

I found buying smaller with a little patience provides an excellent result in a couple of years at a big cost saving.

Too Much Support

If you took my advice above with regard to smaller plants you may not need to stake many plants.

If you do need to support bear in mind that to grow strong trees need to be stressed and will react by increasing the size of roots and the trunk.

Staking plants too firmly can lead to a weakly anchored root system and tree damage

I normally stake about 1/3 of the way up (as you can see in this picture) using a soft tie to protect the bark.

The stake is positioned on the side that prevailing winds will blow.

The tree or shrub should be able to move gently in the wind to encourage the development of strong roots.

Regularly check the tie is not damaging the bark.

Generally it should only take a single growing season before the plant is established and the support can be removed.