Bare Root Fruit and Nut Trees
Bare Root Fruit and Nut Trees

Planting - 1. About Bare Root Trees Planting

Bare root trees planting is the last one and – why not? – the most exciting part of a process that makes tangible for an amateur gardener the desire to establish fruit or ornamental trees of this type in the garden or elsewhere in its property.

But why an amateur gardener chooses to plant bare root trees and not balled and burlapped trees (B&B) or even potted trees? What exactly are their advantages over their – inevitable – disadvantages? Still, how can manage the bare root trees from the moment they are purchased until they are planted?

In all of these questions, the above-mentioned amateur gardener is the most inappropriate to answer. This conclusion was unanimously reached by the editorial team of ‘Kalliergeia’ and that is why assumes its responsibility to present calmly, impartially and in depth, the relative – but also the slightly irrelevant – bare root trees planting, things.

The condition in which the root system is found, it is clear that it contributes decisively to the successful planting of all the bare root trees.

About Bare Root Trees Planting - Bare Root Trees Roots Before & After Pruning
Bare Root Trees Roots

Before the Decision for Planting Any Tree

The idea of planting any type of fruiting or ornamental tree is a wonderful idea. But the prospective amateur gardener before realizing the wonderful idea will have to take into account certain things – perhaps no less important than the idea itself. Why? Because perhaps there is nothing more disappointing than planting a Platanus occidentalis under the overhead power lines or a Ficus carica beside the swimming pool.

So before the purchase of any type of tree the amateur gardener must be:

  • Sure that there is enough available soil for the tree to grow
  • Ensure that the tree will be planted at the right distance from buildings, walls and structures
  • Ready to adjust the species of trees or their varieties in the event that there are overhead lines just above the selected location, such as power or telephony cables
  • Knowledgeable of the microclimate of the area, empirically (what are the existing trees and varieties in the area) or scientific (meteorological data where available)
  • Knowledgeable of the mechanical, physical and chemical properties of the soil, empirically (what are the existing trees and varieties in the area, type and texture of soil etc.) or scientific (soil analysis etc)

About Planting Bare Root Trees

About Bare Root Trees Planting - Not Exactly Proper Tree Distance from Power Lines
Not Exactly Proper Tree Distance from Power Lines

Pros & Cons of Bare Root Trees

After researching, studying and meditating, the amateur gardener concludes with the decision to purchase bare root trees. Why; But because it appreciates that the advantages of planting bare root trees are more than their disadvantages – as might be apparent from the quote below. And that’s a remarkable appreciation.

Advantages of Bare Root Trees

  • Less expensive
  • The transport costs are lower
  • Greatest proportion of the existing root system, compared to those that offered as B&B trees, which can reach up to 200%, due to the fact that the bare root is exported by machines that dig deeper and wider into the area of the tree’s rhizosphere
  • Girdling roots (curled and tangled) are easily identified and removed
  • There is no difference between the soil medium and the soil type where the bare root trees are to be planted
  • The planting of the bare root trees is done in less time

Disadvantages of Bare Root Trees

  • A percentage of the root system that can reach up to 90% of the roots is lost when the tree is extracted from the soil of the nursery
  • There is an increased risk of roots desiccation and therefore lose the trees
  • The planting takes place in a certain period of the year, from late autumn, when the trees have shed their leaves until the beginning of spring, before the buds are developed

About Planting Bare Root Trees

About Bare Root Trees Planting - Select Tractor-mounted Tree Lifting Machine
Select Tractor-mounted Tree Lifting Machine

Preparing for Bare Root Trees Planting

The amateur gardener knows that before the planting of bare root trees, various works are being carried out to create the right conditions for successful establishment and subsequent good development.

However, these jobs are tailored to the possibility of plowing or not the field and the garden, which the amateur gardener also knows – and he does so.

About Planting Bare Root Trees

With Plow

If there is a possibility of plowing and /or enough trees to be planted, then:

  • Deep plowing (up to 60 cm – 24 in) takes place by incorporating 20 to 40 tonnes per hectare of digested and disinfected manure or compost
  • Normal plowing followed at a depth of 40 cm (16 in), incorporating phosphate fertilizer
  • After, discing or tilling is performed
  • Follows the mark of the bare root trees planting site(s) after taking into account the appropriate distance between them
  • The planting hole or holes are digging 7 to 10 days before planting
  • The shape of the hole is that of the truncated cone, having its bottom the small base of cone
  • The depth of the hole is slightly larger than the root length while its width is three times larger than the diameter of the root system of the tree

About Planting Bare Root Trees

Plough or Plow a Field Before Bare Root Trees Planting
Plough or Plow a Field Before Bare Root Trees Planting

Without Plow

If there is no possibility of plowing, then:

  • Work starts by digging the hole or holes 7 to 10 days before planting
  • The shape of the hole is that of the truncated cone, having its bottom the small base of cone
  • The depth of the hole, in this case, depends to a large extent on the climatic data of the area and mainly on the rainfall as well as on the possibility of permanent irrigation
  • If the climate is generally wet and rainfall is frequent then the depth of the hole is slightly larger than the length of the roots
  • The same happens if there is a permanent irrigation system
  • If the climate is more hot and dry and the rainy few, then the depth of the hole must be 50 to 60 cm (20-24 in)
  • The width of the planting hole is in all cases three times larger than the root diameter of the tree

About Planting Bare Root Trees

About Bare Root Trees Planting - Bare Root Fruit and Nut Trees at Nursery
Bare Root Fruit and Nut Trees at Nursery

The Weather Setback

And there, where the amateur gardener is ready to go ahead with the planting of bare root trees, he/she listens to the radio weather forecast that dangerous weather phenomena are expected.

So what does he do?

He waits for the Second Part of the tribute to bare root trees planting from ‘Kalliergeia’.

With this attitude, the amateur gardener proves to be a deeply optimistic man.

About Planting Bare Root Trees

About Bare Root Trees Planting - Slightly Dangerous Weather Phenomena
Slightly Dangerous Weather Phenomena

References

The References to this perfectly prepared article entitled Planting – 1. About Bare Root Trees Planting, are presented by the giant Johnny Cash in the traditional American song God’s Gonna Cut You Down.

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Johnny Cash - God's Gonna Cut You Down
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  1. Trowbridge, P. J., & Bassuk, N. L. (2004). Trees in the Urban Landscape: Site Assessment, Design, and Installation. Hoboken, NJ: John Wiley & Sons.
  2. Watson, G. W., & Himelick, E. B. (1997). Principles and Practice of Planting Trees and Shrubs (1st ed.). International Society of Arboriculture.

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