I just accepted a job 100+ miles south of where I currently live and will likely be moving after school gets out in the summer. My question is regarding my cherry bushes. I have a Romeo and a Juliet, both about 5 years old that I would like to take with me.
Do you think it is possible to dig them out while they are still dormant for winter and put them in pots to take when I move in a couple of months? They are pretty large, maybe 5-6 feet tall and 3-4 feet in diameter and have been producing pretty well for the past couple of years.
The root ball will probably surprise you with how big it is. I dug up much smaller plants a couple years ago when I moved and it was a chore. No reason that you can’t do it, just be prepared for some work. Also I would recommend seriously pruning the tops to compensate for the root pruning when you dig. Another option would be to dig up some of the suckers that are probably growing up near the bush and leave the mother plant. Please take pics as I’m curious to know what the root ball looks like on a bush of that age.
I’ve transplanted some carmine jewels that suckered up 10 or 15’ from the parent bush and which were already a couple years old. They were attached to the parent bush by a long thick horizontal root, and didn’t have as much of their own roots as I expected. Nor did they all survive the transplant. In the future I would locate that root connection and severe it, then wait another year to dig the suckered bush. You don’t have that luxury of time, though. If you take the whole bush, you will need a large tub or stout bag to haul it, and it might be a 2- person job, but doable, I would think. They are generally pretty hardy bushes, so I was surprised when a couple of mine did not survive the transplanting. Now my challenge is the cherry fruit fly. Best wishes on your move.
Thanks for the replies! I contacted a tree grower up the street and they have some big buckets that I can pick up, so the plan is to pot them into that while they are still dormant and then leave them on the patio until I move in a couple months.
I moved 6 of my romance bushes 2 years ago and they all did well. They were probably a year younger than yours and 2 feet smaller. Took me about 20mins a tree working pretty hard. Worth it though vs starting over with a $40 twig. Plus I assumed whoever was going to end up buying our house probably wouldn’t care about all the fruit trees so we moved what we could to our new place before selling. Also we had 3 or 4 suckers and as Northwoods said they had no roots, planted them all in the same spot and somehow they all survived, probably need to dig up and spread out this year come to think of it.