Outdoor Plants - Planting and Care Guide
We strive to provide the finest plant material you will find anywhere. To ensure your success, we have created this planting & care guide.
Follow these instructions and you will have happy and healthy plants that will make all of your friends and neighbors jealous! If you have any questions or concerns regarding your plants, please feel free to contact us. We have many dedicated professionals that would be happy to assist you!
5 Steps for a Successful Planting
Step 1 - Find the right spot
The most important factor in your plant’s success will be planting it in a location with the right conditions for it to thrive. There are four main factors to consider before planting; size, sunlight, access to water, and soil. Does your spot have enough room for the plant to grow? How much sunlight does your plant need? Can I keep this plant watered in this location? Answer those questions and you’ll have a great idea about which location is best.
Step 2 - Prepare your planting hole
Start your planting by digging a hole that is twice as wide and the same depth as the container (or burlap root ball) your plant comes in. Once you’ve pulled the existing soil out of the hole, mix it half and half with Soil Building Conditioner. Adding Soil Building Conditioner (or compost) to your soil will help to feed your plants over time and will also help you keep your plant moist by holding a little extra moisture. If your existing soil is terrible (rocky, clumpy, etc...) you can use topsoil instead of your existing soil.
This is also a perfect time to add organic starter fertilizer to your soil mixture. Starter fertilizer will give your new plants a much-needed boost! Read the instructions on the fertilizer to learn how much to mix in.
Step 3 - Prepare your plant and place it
Pull your plant out of the container and lightly rough up the root ball to encourage your plant’s roots to grow outwards. If your plant is in burlap, DO NOT remove the burlap as your plant’s roots may have attached themselves to the burlap. Keeping the burlap intact will also help hold the root ball together. The burlap will break down over time as the roots grow through it into the surrounding soil. Next, place your plant in the hole and situate it how you like it. The top of the root ball should be at or slightly above the surrounding soil level. Once your plant is in place, loosen the burlap and twine from the trunk of your plant. Discard any loose burlap and all the twine.
Step 4 - Fill the planting hole
Now that you have your plant where you want it, start backfilling your planting hole with the soil/fertilizer mixture you created earlier. Water around your plant deeply as you add the soil to encourage it to settle evenly around the plant (and to give you a head start on your initial watering). Fill your planting hole up to the level of the surrounding soil, making sure that you are not burying the stem of the plant (which is one of the fastest ways to kill a plant) You’ll have some extra soil, so use it to create a raised berm around the perimeter of the planting hole. This berm will force water to go down through the root system when you are watering your plants rather than just running off to the sides.
Step 5 - Finish your planting
Once you’ve finished filling your planting hole, you’ll want to water your plant in well to ensure the soil is nice and moist. If you are planting a tree, you may want to use tree stakes to keep your plant from tipping over during high winds. To stake a tree, grab a couple of large tree stakes (the bigger, the better), and drive them down at least 2 feet deep on each side of your tree. The stakes should be placed slightly beyond the root ball of the tree, and should be lined up with the most common wind direction. Use chain-lock to tie the tree loosely to the tree stakes. The tree should be able to sway a little bit in each direction during high winds. You’ll also want to make sure you don’t tie too tightly around the trunk of the tree as it can constrict your tree’s growth.
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Caring for your new plants
Make sure your plant is well watered
Did you know that 95% of new plant failures are a result of a plant not getting enough water? It’s true! Ensuring that your plant gets the right amount of water is the most important thing you can do to make sure your plants thrive. New plants do not yet have well established root systems, and thus cannot make good use of the groundwater over a large area. This means that for the first few years, especially during the warm season, you’ll have to closely monitor your plants. It is actually very easy to check moisture levels in your soil. Start by digging down about a foot deep next to your plants and grabbing a handful of soil, squeeze the soil. The soil should feel cool and moist, but not drip. If your soil drips when you squeeze it, it may be holding a bit too much water, and you’ll want to scale back on watering. If your soil feels warm and dry, you’ll need to increase your watering. Don’t trust rain to water your new plants. A full inch of rainwater will only soak down about 6 inches deep in dry soil, you’ll need considerably more! Also, don’t trust your automatic watering systems until you are sure that they are giving your plants the correct amount of moisture. They may need to be adjusted periodically to ensure proper watering.
Continue to feed your plants
Giving your plants some additional fertilizer can really help your plants thrive. Depending on what kind of plant you are growing, you may want to fertilize every few weeks or as little as once a month during the growing season. We highly recommend Gardner & Bloome fertilizers for everything from Sequoias to Strawberries!
Watch for pests, diseases and weedsIt has often been said that the best fertilizer is a gardener’s shadow! In many ways, that is true. After all, if you check in on your plants even for a few minutes a day, you’ll notice problems before they can become major issues. Pests, diseases and weeds are far easier to treat when they are caught early. Keep an eye on your plants and come see us if you notice any issues.
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We strive to provide the finest plant material you will find anywhere. To ensure your success, we have created this planting & care guide. Follow these instructions and you will have happy and healthy plants that will make all of your friends and neighbors jealous! If you have any questions or concerns regarding your plants, please feel free to contact us. We have many dedicated professionals that would be happy to assist you!