The key is to regularly water your newly-planted trees, at least bimonthly for two months. It is also important to ensure you select a location where your tree has enough space, which you can calculate from a variety's eventual height and spread (detailed above).
Bare-root and containerised trees have differing planting requirements. With bare-root, it is important to soak your tree's roots in water for up to two hours before planting, while with containerised trees, it is crucial to drench their rootballs. If you have a bare-root tree, it can be useful to prune woody roots back a few inches, whilst containerised trees should have their spiralised roots freed (that is, if they appear to be growing around the rootball's circumference). When planting your bare-root trees, we advise you to dig a hole to ensure that the graft point is above the soil, and when planting containerised trees, the pot must rest no lower than one inch below the ground.
Bare root and containerised trees do also share planting requirements. Firstly, dig a hole twice the radius of the rootball. Then stake your tree no more than two to three inches from the stem, pointing away from the prevailing wind. Fill the hole with a mix of compost and garden soil, and add fertiliser and mycorrhizal fungi, additionally ensuring that you do not compress the soil. After providing your tree with a generous watering, add mulch on top (whether bark and wood chippings, or compost, manure, leaf-mould, and stones), and make sure that this doesn't touch the stem. Tie the stake to your tree, leaving space for growth. You can then conclude by placing a rabbit guard around your tree.
Come Spring, we encourage you to apply fertilser and replace decomposed mulch, and check the ties for no rubbing. In Autumn, collect the fallen leaves.
Maple trees are wonderfully easy to grow. Your tree’s growth and output will likely be fine providing you follow our planting and care instructions. Below we address some common topics:
- Hardiness: Maples can be found growing throughout temperate regions of the world, and are hence well-adapted to the English climate.
- Position: Japanese maples are suited to dappled shade, while red and Norwegian maples are suited to full sun. Planting your tree in a sheltered spot will help prevent uprooting in strong winds.
- Soil Types: Soil types are best ignored and remain an unwelcome confusion. Every plant will adapt to its conditions. Having said that, less than ideal conditions will certainly hinder their growth. Waterlogged soils will starve your tree of oxygen, which plays a key role in photosynthesis; causing its roots to rot, consequentially creating the perfect environment for disease. Similarly, compressed soils can starve a tree of oxygen and water, so do not compress the soil when planting. Aeration can be improved further with mulching.
- Planting in Pots: Japanese maples are perfect for pots and will benefit from slightly acidic soil. Potting with a mix of ericaceous compost and garden soil will produce a slightly acidic pH and an excellent soil structure overall. You may find that pH will rise overtime, but you can maintain the acidity by watering with rainwater, and using pine needles and conifer bark as mulch. Larger species of maple will suffice in pots, but growth will be restricted. Nevertheless, dependent on individual preference, this may be beneficial as they can grow to a fairly considerable size.