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Cold Weather Planting and Storage – Shrubs and Trees in Containers

Trees in containers have many benefits, but we are often asked for advice about planting during cold weather. Winter is an excellent time for planting, though not during a freeze. In this post we’ll outline the best way to keep your contained plants safe until they can be moved into the ground.

Firstly, remember to keep them inside their containers until conditions are suitable for planting, especially if they’re subject to freezing conditions. Removing the pot or container from the root ball during a freeze can easily damage or snap small roots, an inadvisable start for the plant.

Trees in containers can be kept outdoors, though standard trees will need to be leaned against surfaces which won’t damage the bark. The practice keeps them from blowing over, though feel free to place them almost entirely horizontal, so long as there’s no risk from pests like rabbits and deer. Regular container conditions apply, so keep all plants on a free draining surface such as gravel. At the absolute least make sure they’re not kept in a location where water pools.

Trees and shrubs can also be kept in a cool shed or garage for up to a week of plant storage. Be sure not to keep them in a warm location, since the environmental shock of moving back outside could damage the plant.

When the ground thaws to become moderately moist it’s time to plant. Feel free to refer to our guide on Successful Tree Planting to help with the process. By following these guidelines correctly you’ll give your new purchase an excellent start.

Cold Weather Planting and Storage:

Bare Root Plants

Rootballed Trees and Hedge Plants

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