Transplant Tree Care

transplant tree care

Transplant Tree Care

By Taylor Crawford


After transplant tree care, it is important to know that it will have to be watered more regularly than an established specimen. This is because the root system is not established in your landscape. The plant’s root mass is not of sufficient size to support itself at this time. Establishment in your yard varies depending on the tree or shrub. It takes between one and two years for deciduous species. Conifers and evergreens can take 2 to 3 years to establish in your landscape. This means that trees that are deciduous can have their stakes removed after the second year, while evergreens and conifers can have their stakes removed after the third year. Be sure to adjust the straps each consecutive year to account for the swelling of the trunk as it fills with water and sugars. Do not fertilize the tree the first year because the tree is trying to focus on root growth, not foliage growth.


To encourage root growth and help the tree with establishment, we recommend applying a root stimulator in the liquid form for instant uptake during the transplant process and a granular mycorrhiza for the longevity of the tree in that year. Both of which benefit root growth and will help the tree during heat stress or severe cold. There is an old saying, “Stronger roots equals stronger shoots”. In other words, we want to work from the ground up when dealing with plants. Healthier root growth is correlated to having an overall healthier plant.


Moving forward, when we get to fall, we want to wrap our tree trunks on deciduous trees. Wrapping the tree avoids windburn and sun scald. Both can cause damage to the trunk on thin barked trees. We want to wrap our trees from Halloween to Easter as a rule of thumb. Tree wrapping will be continued until the tree forms a thick enough bark layer. We also recommend staking your trees off with fencing wire or hardware cloth if there are deer in your area.


Also, during this time, we want to water when our irrigation systems are off. This will prevent desiccation and winter dieback. Even though the tree is dormant, it is still actively growing and requires hydration on our cold winter days. Anytime we are expected to go through a week or more of dryness, we need to be watering. We do not want our trees to dry out completely during the transplant process and there should always be moisture present in the soil.

Lastly, we want to compensate for extreme wind, heat, or cold by watering extra. This is because Colorado is so dry, and the tree will take it up when it needs it rather than searching for this moisture. The more a tree or shrub must search for water, the more work the plant has to do. Extra work increases the stress the plant will be under. This is why watering during these extremes and throughout dormancy is so important.

Come in today to see us for your next tree purchase. We will support your transplant tree care needs.

The Sprucery Garden Center is best tree nursery and garden center in Parker, Elizabeth, Castlerock, Castle Pines, Centennial, Greenwood Village, Lone Tree, Highlands Ranch, Aurora, and Denver.

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