When is the best planting time for trees? Information at the best time

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Apple tree - Malus

Due to their sometimes enormous height trees in the garden and not least under all the plants occupy a special position. They tower above almost everything and become the central eye-catcher. The most common example is the traditional house tree with special symbolic power. There are trees with different leaf shapes and colors, with long pointed needles and evergreen and deciduous. It is mainly planted in autumn and spring. When is the best time for planting depends on various factors, i.a. sensitivity to frost.

The planting influencing factors

Not every tree can be planted every season. Because only if they are planted at the right time, they have the best conditions to grow optimally and thrive. The best possible timing for planting depends on different conditions.
  • The most important point is the condition of the root ball
  • Planting times depending on whether it is bare root, bale or container goods
  • Differences partly with evergreen and deciduous trees
  • Hardiness of the respective woody species a factor not to be despised
  • Hardiness depends crucially on the region and the climatic conditions
In principle, trees should preferably be planted in the absence of vegetation, ie in the autumn, although for most of them planting is possible both in autumn and in spring. The soil should be frost-free in any case. An exception is some frost-sensitive woody plants such as the Judas tree, a beautiful house tree, for which spring is the better time to plant.

Limited planting rootstock

As bare root goods almost exclusively deciduous or deciduous species are offered. This can be fruit trees such as apple, pear and cherry as well as more heat-sensitive species such as apricot, nectarine or peach. Incidentally, the apple tree is also very popular as a house tree. Root-dead plants are, as the name implies, sold without earth bales. That makes them particularly susceptible to dehydration.
Consequently, especially these bale qualities should be planted as directly as possible after purchase. If this is not possible and intermediate storage is necessary, it should be as short as possible and the root should not dry out during this time. It is best to store them away from the sun, drafts and frost.
A root-bare tree can usually be planted after the fall of leaves in autumn, from about mid-October to early December, and depending on the weather in early spring from about March to April. The soil should be frost-free at the time of planting. Both autumn and spring planting can reduce the risk of frost or dry damage. Nevertheless, it is recommended to plant preferably in the fall.

Planting times for bales

So-called bale goods grow outdoors and are usually more robust and strong. It is offered in contrast to root-bare plants with earth bales. Dug up in the nursery initially weakens the plants, because their roots are damaged despite all care. However, the whole thing also has advantages, because by sticking out the plants are forced to form new roots, which are particularly vital and grow well into the soil, provided that the planting takes place in a timely manner.

Lilac - syringa

In addition, there is no risk in these grown in the field plants that their roots, as can be the case, for example, in potted, neither matted nor grown in a circle. Planting time for frost hardy evergreen deciduous shrubs and conifers with burls is during their natural rest period from October to March, depending on the weather also partly in the months of September and April.
They should be in the ground by the end of April at the latest. The best months for planting are October and November, for conifers also the September. In contrast to deciduous woody plants, evergreens evaporate a lot of water even in winter and should therefore be rooted before the soil freezes.

All-season planting of container plants

  • Container plants can always be planted all year round
  • Provided they were reared in the pot in which they are sold
  • The root system must have developed within this pot
  • Exceptions to the planting of container plants are periods of ground frost
  • Nevertheless, year-round planting is not always advantageous
For example, a tree that is taken out of the pot in summer and placed in the warm and dry soil will be much harder to grow than one planted at normal planting times in the fall or spring.
Tip: Potted plants offered in the trade are not necessarily container plants, because also on the field engraved specimens are often placed in front of the sale for reasons of stability and reasons of optics in a pot.

Classic autumn planting

Classic planting time, especially for winter hardy trees, is the time of vegetative rest. It starts in September and ends at the end of April. It is only interrupted by the frosty period. Now all trees can be planted that are not sensitive to frost, such as cherry, plum or apple, a possible candidate as a house tree.
It does not matter if it is bare root, bale or container goods. Evergreen deciduous and coniferous trees react particularly positively to an early autumn planting. Although many trees have lost their foliage and look as if they are in the deepest resting phase, their roots are still active and can easily become anchored in the ground before the first frosts occur.
In autumn, the planting season begins. Fall as a planting season best adapts to the natural rhythm of the plants. Around the 23rd of September, the plants begin to prepare for the wintry rest phase. They extract the nutrients from the leaves and store them in their roots, which is reflected in the colorful autumn leaves. The leaves eventually fall off, while the roots become more active. Planting at this time has clear advantages over spring planting.
  • The still relatively warm soil makes it easier for trees to grow
  • Plants can still form many fiber or fine roots before winter
  • This makes it easier for them in the spring to absorb water, nutrients and oxygen
  • Winter wetness also ensures a good contact of the roots to the earth
  • In the case of plants resulting cavities in the soil are closed
  • This reduces the risk of dehydration damage in the spring
  • Plant selection in nurseries or garden retailers in the fall greatest

Almond tree - Prunus dulcis

In the autumn planted trees have a developmental advantage compared to planted in the spring, which benefits them in the new shoot. In addition, there is a much lower care and support effort, which is many times higher in spring and summer.
Tip: The time span between the purchase and the planting of the trees should always be as short as possible, which is one hundred percent when planting in the autumn.

Early years planting

Buying and planting in spring, between March / April and May, are especially suitable for trees or woody plants, which are basically or especially in the first years a little frost sensitive. These include u.a. Nectarine, apricot, peach, red or hornbeam, laurel cherry but also a wintergreen magnolia or conifers like the yew. In spring, freshly planted shrubs, especially unusually high temperatures associated with drought, cause problems. Plants that have not yet developed fine roots at this time, now suffering from enormous stress.
In addition, deciduous trees now have to form new shoots, leaves and flowers in addition to roots, which requires a lot of energy. However, for sensitive trees, spring remains the better alternative for planting because it provides better protection against frost damage caused by frost. Moreover, they are exposed during this time no autumn or winter storms and also the risk of stress cracks due to strong temperature fluctuations does not exist. However, the need for care, especially in terms of water needs, slightly higher than in the fall.
When it comes to the planting of deciduous, coniferous and fruit trees, autumn is without a doubt the best time. It does not matter whether it is bare root, bale or container goods, or evergreen or deciduous trees. In contrast, it is still better to plant more sensitive shrubs in spring. Even if the maintenance effort is slightly higher, the young woody plants will thank you for their vigorous growth, lush flowering or a variety of delicious fruits. For not only a symbolic house tree is to grow and thrive over many years and preserve its very special appearance.

Video Board: Best time to plant trees|Daphne Richards|Central Texas Gardener.

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