Containerized Plants

Tools & Supplies Needed

You will need the following:

  • 2-3 4-foot stakes if planting a tree, along with rope or other flexible tie material
  • Hose/water source
  • Pruning shears
  • Spade for digging hole and backfilling

Planting Steps

When you are ready to plant you must:

  1. Prepare a planting hole as described in Number 2 above. The depth of the hole should be the same as the soil in the container, and the width of the hole should be at least twice the width of the container.
  2. Once the planting hole is prepared, lay the containerized tree or shrub on its side and gently slide the plant out of the container. It may be necessary to push on the sides of the container to loosen the root ball. If the plant has become root-bound and roots have circled the container, score the roots in 3-4 places with a knife or pruning shears.
  3. Place the intact root ball in the hole. Trees should be planted so that the graft or trunk flare is 1" above the final soil surface. This is usually the same level at which the tree was growing in the container.
  4. Backfill the soil into the hole a few inches at a time, firming the soil after each addition. While backfilling, be sure the tree remains vertical.
  5. Form a ridge to hold water and stake and protect trees as described above under "Planting Bare Root Trees and Shrubs."
Diagram demonstrating how to properly plant a containerized tree