How to Grow a Tree

A tree is  one of the most rewarding plants to grow in your garden. Watching it develop over time and knowing that it it can be handed down through generations is a wonderful feeling.  It's important therefore to get the basics right, in order to avoid disaster.  Having your tree die or needing to cut it down is truly heartbreaking.

It has been said that there are three things you should do in life: Create a home, have a child and plant a tree.  On the first two, ther is much advice available, but how do you plant a tree which continues to grow throughout the years?

There is no all-embracing answer to keeping a tree healthy thoughout its life, as there are so many different types of trees that exist. However, there are some common things that you should bear in mind.

Before a tree is planted, much  is to be considered. Which place is the best one? The  roots must be able to stretch themselves out, and also the branches.  Position your tree at a suitable distance away from your house therefore, to avoid problems which could be caused by roots and branches once it grows to full-size.  If it is too close you your house, the roots could, over time, attack the house's foundations.   Similarly, make sure that the tree is positioned far enough away from your neighbors' property so that it does not darken your neighbors' views.

When choosing a type of tree to grow, it's worth thinking about what you would like from your new garden occupier.  If you'd like to offer food and protection to birds, you should probably choose a type of tree which is naturally local to your part of the world  - if possible a decidous tree.

Planting a tree

Autumn is the most favourable time to plant your tree in your garden.  The next best alternative is during the early spring.

Most of the time, trees that you buy are usually in a pot, but trees from nurseries are often naked root, that is to say without protecting earth around the roots. You must plant a naked root tree quickly, otherwise, the roots will dry up.  Before planting the tree, place the roots in water for 1 to 4 hours.

The planting pit should be 1 meter in diameters and about 50 centimeters deep.  Place the root bundle of the tree in the pit.  Before refilling the pit, position a strong supporting stake in the open hole.  Placing the stake in before filling the pit, rather than afterwards, will ensure that you do not harm the roots.

Refill the hole carefully with composted earth, gently shaking the tree occasionally as you fill the hole, to properly distribute the earth between the roots. A lot of water helps this distribution between the root fibers.

Once the pit is full, ensure that the ground is well watered - it must be really wet to help your tree settle in to its new home.

Then fasten the  tree to the stake with tree tape to support it during its first years.  This will help to ensure that your young tree does not fall victim to strong winds which can destroy unsupported trees.

Tips and advice on How to Grow a Tree
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