Most folks plant annual flowers and vegetables with ease but tend to feel some anxiety when it comes to bigger plants such as shrubs. In reality, the techniques are similar; you just need a bigger hole! Here are a few shrub planting tips to make you feel more comfortable with the process:
- Take care to read or research the lighting conditions your shrub requires and find that location in your yard. Keep in mind that your other trees and shrubs may not have unfurled all of their leaves yet and the sunny spot you’re choosing in early spring may actually be shadier in summer.
- Dig a hole twice as wide and just as deep at the shrub’s pot. Place the excavated soil around the hole to use as backfill. You can place the potted shrub in the hole to judge how your hole is progressing.
- Remove the shrub from the pot and use your hand to gently loosen the root ball a bit. This helps the roots more easily grow into the soil around them. Place the shrub into the hole. The top surface of the root ball should be level with the ground’s surface.
- Return the excavated soil to the hole, filling in around the root ball. Stop occasionally to press the soil down gently to expel any air pockets.
- Water the shrub thoroughly to saturate the root ball and surrounding soil. This helps remove air pockets and also helps get those roots growing into their new soil environment.
- Apply a layer of mulch up to 2 inches around the base and the root zone of the new planting. Keep the shrub well-watered for the first several months to ensure its roots grow outward and establish themselves.
Want more tips on planting shrubs? Watch this video from HortTube.