How to plant a tree correctly
As they say, ‘if you only plant one thing, make it a tree’! Wildlife-friendly, colourful and full of long-term character, trees are essential garden plants. Here’s how to get them going… 1 Dig a hole three times as wide as the rootball of your tree and at the same depth. Loosen the soil in this area to improve drainage and improve its texture with organic ma er such as compost. A sprinkling of Rootgrow may help establishment. 2 Before planting in the ground or in a pot, soak the rootball by standing it in a bucket of water for half an hour to loosen it. Then tease and loosen the rootball, particularly if it’s a root-bound container tree. If the la er, trimming a few congested roots may help. 3 Put the rootball in the prepared hole, ensuring the top of where the roots meet the trunk is level with the soil surface. If any deeper, there’ll be less airflow to the roots, resulting in poor establishment and heightened risk of disease. 4 Insert a stake at this point if needed, and then carefully refill the planting hole, ensuring there are no gaps or air pockets anywhere in the soil. Firm down the soil and make sure the tree is sturdy and stable in its hole. Water it in well. 5 Use a plastic tree guard or a spiral of chicken wire to stop deer or rabbits nibbling the bo om of the trunk, and then give your tree a top layer mulch of composted bark – make sure none touches the trunk or it’ll encourage rot.