Bareroot and Container Plantings

Bare-Root Planting

Make sure the roots of bare-root plants are never allowed to dry-out.

  1. Remove all wrapping and packaging material.
  2. Check to make sure roots are moist and alive. Trim out any dead (brittle, dry) roots.
  3. Dig a hole large enough to fit all roots horizontally without bending, and deep enough for the plant to sit where its soil line is.
  4. Set the plant in the hole at the correct depth and backfill with amended soil (50% original soil from the hole, 50% high quality compost).
  5. Form a berm around trunk (a ring as wide as the hole) using soil. This allows water to soak in slowly rather than washing soil away.
  6. Water slowly and thoroughly with a mixture of water and root stimulator.
  7. Prune about 1/3 of the top from the plant to help balance the top growth and the root system.

NOTE: With grafted plants make sure the graft is at least 1 inch above the soil-line after planting.NEVER put a graft at or below the soil line.

Container Grown Plants

  1. Dig hole twice the diameter of the container and as deep as the container.
  2. Carefully remove the container and place the plant in the hole.
  3. Back-fill the hole to the correct depth with amended soil (50% original soil from the hole, 50% high quality compost).
  4. Form a berm around trunk (a ring as wide as the hole) using soil. This allows water to soak in slowly rather than washing soil away.
  5. Water slowly and thoroughly with a mixture of water and root stimulator.
  6. Prune only to achieve desired shape.

Root Stimulator: A mix of mild fertilizer and rooting hormone. It encourages rooting and helps reduce stress to the plant. Always follow package instructions when mixing root stimulator. It can be applied every 7-10 days for the first month after planting.

Fertilize new planting once it starts to show new growth. An all-purpose fertilizer is best for this (please note that hydrangeas, azaleas, rhododendrons, camellias, and blueberries require more specific fertilizers that also adjust pH).

Download this Bareroot information as a pdf.