Q:

How do you transplant fruit trees?

A:

Fruit trees are best transplanted in the winter when they are dormant. When digging up the tree, avoid harming the roots and maintain a healthy root to foliage ratio. Protect the root ball in transit, trimming off any damaged or kinked roots before planting. Spread the roots out in the new hole, backfill to the same depth it was originally planted, and mulch with organic material.

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Older trees are more difficult to transplant. Their roots are longer and more difficult to keep intact. Many older trees suffer from transplant shock and will not survive the process. Fruit yield will be decreased after transplanting, with many trees needing at least a year or more to recover.

Pruning is required after transplanting. Heavy foliage requires a large root system to supply it with water. Transplanting affects the size of the root system, so adjustments need to be made. This will affect the appearance of the tree, making it less attractive until it recovers over time. Mulch can help the tree receive the water it needs and keep the base free of competing weeds and grass.

The newly transplanted tree should be staked at a height of about one meter to allow the roots to firmly secure themselves in the new location.

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