Weekend Tip – Shopping for New Trees and Shrubs

The soft soil of the rainy season is perfect for welcoming new trees and shrubs. After the 2″ of rain we got Friday, the soil might be a bit saturated, but we can go shopping! This morning Native Foods Nursery, of Dexter Oregon sent an email that they are have 10% off sale this coming week of trees and shrubs! Whoop! Read my guide for planting trees and shrubs.

This nursery makes my permaculture heart sing because they specialize in the edible varieties of Oregon Natives. Native plants need very little to thrive, no pH amendments, no pest and disease protection, not much water, no heat or cold protection, little or no maintenance. And they provide food for me and habitat for local fauna.

  • Not fussy ✔
  • Provides food ✔
  • Provides ecological function ✔
  • Beautiful ✔

If you’re looking for other fruit bearing or ornamental trees and shrubs–go nuts. Most people don’t realize that fall is perfect for planting perennials and nurseries are often handing out discounts to keep their cash flow going through their slow season.

Why is fall perfect?

It allows your plant time to set down roots and establish connections with local mycorrhizal networks and other symbiotic root-soil systems before spring triggers that first flush of growth.

Should I get bare root or potted?

Bare root plants are so much easier to get planted correctly. For potted trees and shrubs, it is necessary to remove all the potting medium and prune any circling roots. Where as bare roots are ready to go from the box into the ground. (Although they do appreciate a soak to re-hydrate first.)

If you are a go-getter type and don’t want to read all the things, please follow these two rules for planting perennials, and you’ll give your tree a much better start to life.

  1. Do not amend the soil. Even if you have heavy clay, just don’t. It creates soil horizons (boundaries of disparate soil textures) that water doesn’t like to move through. Also, any organic matter will rot away leaving your tree in a sink-hole. For the same reason, If potted, remove all potting medium. Then, prune off circling and long roots.
  2. Plant high and tight. Make sure the crown, or root flare, is just above the soil line. Planting too deeply may cause trunk rot and will inhibit the gas exchange that happens at the crown. Gently tamp soil around base to remove any big air pockets.

Easy Guide for Planting Trees and Other Perennials

What is your favorite nursery? What are you hoping to plant this season?

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