Step-by-step guide to planting shrubs in your garden (and when to do it)
Shrubs are a highly versatile type of plant. They can be used to add a touch of color to your garden in winter (with deciduous shrubs) and define spaces.
And the fact that you are reading this means that you, like us, are also a lover of these plants and understand the full potential they hold. ;)
But do you know for sure...?
What is the best time to plant shrubs.
And the ideal process to do so.
If not, don't worry, because with this post, we are going to answer both questions.
Let's start with the first one...
Why Autumn is the Best Time to Plant Your Shrubs
As with everything, there is no one correct answer to the question of "when is the best time to plant shrubs," but in general, autumn is considered one of the best times to do so.
During this season:
- The temperatures are moderate, allowing shrubs to develop their root systems. This prepares them to withstand the winter's harsh conditions and flourish in spring in all their splendor.
- With the onset of cold weather, insects, bacteria, and fungi also proliferate less. This reduces the chances of the newly planted specimens being attacked by pests or diseases during their development.
But of course, for your shrubs to grow healthy, knowing when to plant them is not enough—you also need to know how to do it.
That's the next thing we're going to cover.
Steps to Plant Your Shrubs in Autumn
1. Shrub Selection:
Each shrub has its own needs concerning:
- Soil type.
- Space to grow.
- Care requirements.
Consider all these aspects when choosing a shrub that suits your garden conditions. For example, if the planting area receives little light, choose species that adapt well to semi-shady conditions. If your area experiences heavy frost, prioritize shrubs adapted to cold climates.
2. Soil Preparation:
Soil preparation is essential to provide a conducive environment for shrub growth.
- Start by removing weeds as they can compete for nutrients with newly planted shrubs.
- Ensure the soil is well-aerated and enriched with organic matter, such as compost or manure, to ensure the availability of essential nutrients.
- In some cases, you may need to add soil mix to meet specific substrate conditions for each shrub species.
3.Digging the Hole for Planting:
When digging a hole for your shrub, consider that:
- It should be approximately twice as wide as the shrub's root ball.
- And deep enough to accommodate the roots.
- If you need to refresh the soil or add organic matter, this is the time to do it.
4. Removing the Shrub from the Container:
Before planting your shrub, you'll need to remove the container protecting the root ball.
- Be very careful not to damage the roots when doing so.
- Check if any roots are tangled or damaged, and trim them before planting the shrub.
- It's essential to expose the root ball to the air for the shortest time possible to reduce plant stress (yes, plants get stressed too).
5. Placing the Shrub in the Hole:
Place the shrub in the hole so that the top of the root ball is level with the ground.
Adjust the shrub's position as necessary and fill the hole with soil, pressing gently to eliminate air pockets.
6. Proper Watering:
After planting the shrub, water it generously to ensure that the soil around the roots is well-soaked. This will blend and seal the soil and ensure that the shrub has enough water available to start growing.
7. Application of Mulch:
Applying a layer of mulch around the shrub helps conserve soil moisture, suppresses weeds, and maintains a more constant soil temperature.
- Make sure not to place the mulch directly against the shrub's trunk to avoid rotting issues.
- If your area experiences heavy frost, there is the option to cover the soil with plastic or sawdust to protect the roots from the cold.
8. Post-Planting Monitoring:
After planting, constant monitoring is key.
- Water according to the soil's water needs to ensure the substrate stays moist, aiding the shrub's rooting.
- Check the shrub as it grows for potential diseases or pests that may jeopardize its growth.
Now you know how and when to plant your shrubs.
We hope this post has been useful for you.
Remember that if you need help designing or caring for your garden, you can contact us.
At Viveros González, we have been working with all types of gardens for many years, and we are experts in keeping plants healthy and happy.