Planting Instructions

Before you plant

  • Call 811 to have the utilities marked before you begin digging. If we are planting your tree or shrub, then we will call for you as part of our planting service.
  • Determine which tree or shrub form you have purchased: Balled and Burlapped or Container
  • Dig a hole about 2-3 times the width of the root ball and slightly shallower than the root ball height. Dig the hole with sloping sides and do not disturb the soil in the bottom of the hole that the root ball will rest upon. Save the soil removed from the hole and break it up nicely. If necessary create a backfill mixture using 2/3 of the native soil with 1/3 of topsoil. We do NOT suggest removing all of the native soil and replacing it with other soil.


Remove the plastic container from the plant. If the roots are entangled make vertical cuts down the outside of the root ball or gently loosen the roots. Then place the root ball into the hole so that the top of the root ball is slightly higher than the ground.

Balled and Burlapped

Place the plant directly into the hole so that the top of the root ball is slightly higher than the ground; leaving the burlap, twine and the wire cage in place. Backfill the hole with soil half way and position the plant how you would like it. Cut and remove the twine from the top of the root ball and away from the trunk. Also remove the top one third of the burlap and wire basket by folding it back or clipping it off.

Additional Instructions

Root Stimulator

Fertilome Root Stimulator This product is for newly planted trees, shrubs, and flowers. It aids in the development of a stronger root structure and promotes vigorous growth for greener plants. Dilution Rate: 3 1/2 Tbsp. per gallon of water


Backfill the hole half way with the native soil mixture around the tree or shrub. Pour the diluted solutiion of Fertilome Root Stimulator over the soil and allow it to soak in wetting the roots. Finish filling the hole and tamp the soil firmly around the root ball.


Spread 2″-3″ of mulch at the base of the tree or shrub keeping the mulch from touching the trunk of the tree. Mulch will help retain moisture and prevent mowers and trimmers from getting too close to the plant.


Staking is recommended for most trees in container pots because they have a lighter root base and can become top heavy. For larger balled and burlapped trees staking is only recommended if needed, such as loose roots or exposure to high winds.


Initially prune only damaged branches.


The only fertilizer recommended at the time of planting is a general root stimulator. We suggest a one time application of Fertilome Root Stimulator. Apply during planting as stated above.

Watering Instructions

For the first several months after planting most roots of trees and shrubs are still within the original root ball. Their roots will dry out faster than the soil around them. To ensure that your tree or shrub is receiving enough water you should monitor the soil moisture by sticking your finger down 2″-3″ at the base of the plant. The soil should be moist to the touch but not soggy.

Water your newly planted tree or shrub slowly to achieve deep water penetration. Saturate the soil surround the root ball about 6″-8″ deep. The most effective way to achieve this saturation is to use soaker hoses or hoses left on a slow trickle directly on the root ball.

As a general rule of thumb your tree or shrub should receive the equivalent of 1″ of rain per week.

Below are the general watering guidelines we recommend:

How Much?

  • Trees: Slow trickle for approx. 10 to 15 minutes.
  • Shrubs: Slow trickle for approx. 5 minutes or using a watering wand at the base of the plant for 2 minutes.

How Often?

Every 2-3 days for the first couple of weeks. After the first couple of weeks, water once a week.

Some plants prefer more water than others so knowing your plant’s water requirements will also help you determine their needs. Feel free to contact us with any questions about your specific tree or shrub.