Tree planting questions

I would like to get your opinion!

Recently I dug holes with a post hole digger with a auger attachment in order to plant some trees. After we planted them it rained several days and now the plants sunk a few inches.

Should I leave them like that or should they need to be replanted and add more dirt/soil underneath?

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Are they grafted fruit trees ?

If so you want that graft to be above the soil level… or the scion/top may root too… giving you results you may not want (like a full size tree, when you wanted a dwarf).

If it is a grafted tree and after sinking a couple of inches, the graft is still a few inches above the soil level… I think you would be OK.

I could not get your picture to open… looked like it my not have finished uploading.


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I wouldn’t worry about it. They all sink some. Digging them up will do more root damage than help anything. IMO.

There is a mix of grafted and none grafted trees. Most all of the trees ware potted and grafted while been potted.

Some others ware planted bare root, the trees that I planted ware persimmons and figs.

I know it wouldn’t hurt the figs but not sure about persimmons.

Here is a pic of one that I grafted but the graft failed, I still planted the rootstock and hoping to grafted in the future but just to give you and idea how much they sunk.

That’s a little more than I was expecting. If you fill it in will it cover the graft union? If not just add some dirt or mulch.

That’s what I thought but I wasn’t sure. Some of them they went down about five inches.

Experience is what we get when we don’t get what we want.

The mantra repeated over and over and over again is that you do not want to disturb the soil under the tree; if the trees needs to be planted at 14 inches, you do not dig a hole deeper than 14 inches. That way the already settled soil will not settle anymore.

Me and my shittastic soil that is 70% rocks I prefer to dig a hole at least 24 inches deep, and then tamp as hard as I can the soil at the 16" level. I then plant my tree higher than desired because the soil will still settle somewhat.

Yeah, I learned that the same way @Ruben is. I still stand by leave them alone. Especially the persimmons. Maybe some of the less delicate (or less expensive) ones could be uprooted.

I like what you’re suggesting specially when we’re talking about a couple hundred trees!

More info is needed:

You talking bare root trees?
Balled n Burlapped trees?
Potted trees?
Or some of each?

Balled n Burlapped are most likely to sink if you make holes too deep and put loose soil in the bottom. And bare root trees should sink the least.
In the case of bare root…if they’ve only been planted a few days you can probably tug lightly and pull them up out of the hole a little if the ground is still super wet.

I had to dig the holes with a post hole digger that is attached to a tractor, then an auger is attached to the post hole digger. Because I had trees of different size pots (width and depth), I also had some that ware bare root (some persimmon varieties and rootstocks) and because I had to do more than couple hundred holes it was wise to use a tool than a shovel! But when I was doing the holes I couldn’t tell the depth of the auger was going on the hole. Also as I mentioned before I didn’t know which tree was going where and some of the bare root trees like persimmons they tend to go deeper.

So after planting most of the trees we had some rain and that’s when lots of the trees started to sink. Some just a couple inches some others more than that, about five inches at the most.

The figs I think they are ok like that but the persimmons that’s the ones I’m not too sure about that.image image

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I dig mine that way. Dig hole. Fill 1/2 with water. Very important. Packs better and gets rid of air pockets. Have someone hold the tree slightly above the nursery dirt line. Fill hole with dirt. Then tamp down with foot. Don’t get in hurry.
I would leave for a few years as they are. Good water retention for dry summers.

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I plant my trees mostly above ground so that when the dirt settles I sill have a hill to shed water away from the trunk.

This was a first one for me, every one of the trees in my property I have done the holes by hand with a shovel. But this time because I had to do a mass planting there was no other way around than to use a piece of equipment to safe time and my back!

What I wasn’t counting with it was that they would sink in because of the depth of the hole and the soil wasn’t pack so with the rain both soil and plant settle down. I wish I knew this before hand so I should have left half of the potted part of tree/plant half way planted and the other half sticking out, eventually after the soil settle down the top of the soil of the plant should have be even with the ground. A lesson to learn!

We had rain all over the weekend and last night I went to check them out and lots of the persimmons were about 10 inches below the ground level, so I would have to doug them back out and put more soil on the bottom then re plant them again.

The bad part is that it’s going to be around 100 trees done by me, myself and I :weary:

Thanks everyone for your input and advice!

What is that white stuff ???

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Sand! I think that’s what you’re talking about…

I would replant While they are still young. There are millions of tree planting projects going on all over the world and from what I’ve seen I bet half are planted too deep and piled with mulch those trees will die a slow death. Extra work but you would be setting them up for a much longer healthier life.

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Thanks! Yes I agree with you 100% might in fact that what I’m working on right now.

Just stop to take a look and a pic of the white stuff that @Daemon2525 was asking about it. It is a mix between the soil, sand and clay. I found several different types of soil on my property from red to white! Go figure.

image image

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That’s crazy looking soil.