Tree shipping

I know some of these places don’t necessarily stock the trees but graft them for you when ordered. I have ordered an apple before and got a 14 inch bareroot fresh bench graft. (From SouthMeadow). Century Farms Orchards do graft their own stock and will take custom graft orders but don’t send you the fresh graft…they will grow it out before shipping. I have some trees ordered from them that they will ship me in November and they should be bare root according to their website.

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It was there fall of 2016, which is when I ordered it. Cummins website says they don’t have all their stock up yet, so it’s entirely possible it may appear on their website later.

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How does one tell a tree is safe to be bare-rooted and shipped in the fall? I will have somewhere around 30 trees (apples and pears) that I would like to sell this fall and use the money to buy more trees to expand my orchard. I would prefer local sales just to avoid the added labor incurred by shipping but if I have to I have to. All trees have been grown in root pruning containers and since they are not in the ground I assume they would go dormant sooner but perhaps not.

I am in middle Tennessee, south of Nashville zone 7A.

Are they assumed dormant after the first good freeze or are there other metrics to be on the look out for?


A tree is safe to bare root when it drops it’s leaves. For apples that’s pretty late. However once it’s cooled off, say Nov, the leaves can be stripped off for shipment.

If they are in root pruning pots why not just sell them that way, at least locally?