by Patrick Leitch, Master OCNT • Landscape Foreman, Ohio Test Applicators License
In OHIO, one of the best times to plant trees is between early March and early May, when trees are still dormant, frost is no longer a threat, and before buds begin. Plant trees as early as possible when soil moisture is high and there are cooler temperatures. Doing this will help ensure root establishment before the hotter, drier summer months. Calm, cool, and overcast days are best for tree planting. Under these conditions, roots are less likely to dry out before getting them in the ground.
At M.J. Design, our best practices include:
We dig the hole for your tree twice as wide as the root ball.
Checking to make sure the tree is straight in the hole.
Use of loose well, amended soil to plant your tree and compact the soil with small tamp in layers as the hole is filled. Doing this limits any settling and leaning the tree may do with watering.
We use an encouraging fertilizer to jump-start your new tree and encourage it through the shock that can befall a tree when planting.
Large topped, heavy trees or trees in high-wind areas are secured with tree stakes to ensure they stay straight.
We monitor to maintain proper hydration on a regular schedule at a rate of 5 gallons per inch of tree trunk circumference per week. As the late winter or early spring season lends to moist soil conditions, additional watering is rarely required.