How to transplant a tree or a shrub ?

We can wish move a tree or shrub for various reasons such as if it is too close to the house and darkens a room, if it has become too bulky and is annoying or even if it does not like where it is installed. Its transplantation remains quite possible in certain cases, and provided that the fundamental points are respected. Failure to do so could seriously jeopardize the survival of the tree or shrub. Let’s find out together which is the best method to adopt.

Transplant a shrub

These are moderately sized plants that can be quite easy to move. The method consists of removing the root ball by cutting all around the base of the trunk. This cut must allow a sufficient set of roots to be taken to guarantee the recovery of the shrub. To do this, you must dig a circular trench, insert the spade under the root system and lift to extract the shrub from its growing medium.

Transplanting a tree: beware of the diameter of the trunk!

There, things get tough given the size of the subject to be replanted in another place. A tree is generally very well anchored to the ground. The diameter of the clod increases in proportion to that of the trunk. It is interesting to know it so as not to be surprised when digging the necessary trench. And if the clod is very large, the risks of seeing it decompact are significant. This is the case with trees whose trunk has a large diameter.

We therefore strongly advise against transplanting a large tree or certain very old species because the risks of not seeing them resume in their new location are very high. Generally, we limit ourselves to transplanting trees whose trunk circumference does not exceed 24 to 25 cm, which represents, at ground level, a diameter of less than 10 cm.

Ensuring the recovery of a tree or shrub after transplantation: advice

Transplanting a tree or shrub is possible between the beginning of November and the very end of Februarybut exclusively outside periods of frost.

When extracting the clod, it is essential to take care not to mistreat it with the spade. The operation can take some time, especially if you want to tackle a large tree. You have to take care of raise the clod little by littleperforming pull-ups all around the root block.

Some roots still risk being more or less injured by the multiple blows of the spade because it is difficult to avoid. It is therefore appropriate to shorten with pruning shears well sharpened and sanitized. There is no question of touching the secondary roots. These are the rootlets, which are much faster to adapt than the large roots once the tree has been transplanted into its new hole. These little secondary roots must stay intact to promote the rapid recovery of a tree or shrub. A recovery that we have the possibility of favoring if we shorten the branches moderately.

But even by respecting all the conditions during the extraction and then the transplantation of a tree or a shrub, the perfect recovery of the subject cannot be confirmed for at least one full year.

Be that as it may, a plant which undergoes this type of operation must benefit from care and in particular from continuous watering during this period of time which can be considered as a recovery period. It must be watered regularly and the frequency depends of course on the climatic conditions. We therefore water more abundantly and more often when it is very hot or during a drought. This does not mean that you have to let your foot swim in the water…

In parallel, it is thought to examine the subject with regularity in order to detect from the beginning any possible infestation of parasites or a start of sickness. Weakened by this shock treatment represented by transplantation, the tree or shrub will then need special attention if it is sick because it may not be able to fight on its own.

Finally, let us understand that the transplantation is stressful, even a pain for a tree as for a shrub because part of the root system is lost or damaged during the extraction operation. This promotes drying out, and sometimes even loosening, which can compromise the recovery of the subject, especially if it is exposed to strong winds. This is why it may be necessary to set up a tutor or tripod stakes at the time of transplantation.

It is clear that transplanting a shrub or a tree leaves no room for improvisation. The gardener who has no experience in this field has every interest in entrust this delicate task to a landscaper.

Leave a Comment