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When & Where to transplant a Spruce

Sullivan

Sullivan

New Member
Joined
Apr 22, 2001
Messages
1
We have a spruce tree that was planted in it's bucket when it was barely a twig. The idea was to give it a good start in a sheltered area, then move it. This was over 10 years ago - we forgot about it. Now that we've been doing some cleanup in 'the back 40' we find that it survived and is about 6 feet tall. We'd like to move it out front.

Our questions: Is this something we can attempt on our own? What is the best time of year to do this (I always thought early spring or late fall)? When choosing a location, low ground (wet), high ground (dryer)?

We live in farm country in southeast Michigan. Thanks for any help you can provide.
 
Deere John

Deere John

ArboristSite Operative
Joined
Feb 2, 2001
Messages
368
Location
Northern Ontario, Canada
Regarding the time of year, the best time is in the fall. The roots are busy storing the energy they will release to the top of the tree in the spring, and they are also growing in preparation to allow the top of the tree to grown next June. Alternately, spring is your second best time. Have the buds flushed yet?

If not, there is still time. Try to locate the tree with the same aspect to the sun that it has had for the past 6 years. Spruce like fresh soil - not too wet and certainly not too dry. Loams are great, gravels are poor. If you are trying to transplant now, try to get all the root mass you can. The tree can tolerate less root pruning now than in the fall. Pack soil around the roots so that there are no air pockets, water moderately, and all should be fine.

If you notice the new shoots wilting, provide moderate water, and shade to the tree (as opposed to just lots of water and direct sun). The more intense sun is your enemy at this time of year.
 
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