· Check new plantings daily for the first two weeks. Thereafter, plants should be checked two to three times per week. Simply dig around the root zone with your fingers to a depth of 2-3” for small plants and 6-8” for larger ones and trees. Water generously when the soil feels dry to the touch.
· Slow, deep watering is preferred. This type of watering is accomplished by placing the hose at the base of a plant, at a heavy trickle, and water 5-10 minutes for small plants, longer for larger plants, while moving the hose in a few locations around the plant base. Up to an hour and moved twice is not uncommon with larger 4” caliper trees. We recommend the use of watering bags on larger stock.
· When the soil feels moist, do not water. Soil must be allowed to dry out between watering. If a plant is maintained in constantly moist soil, the plant’s health will deteriorate over time. A plant weakened by over watering may die of oxygen deprivation or become susceptible to pest and disease.
· Monitoring water requirements frequently is more important than watering frequently. Monitor your plants regularly for the first 1-2 years. Plants close to buildings where heat may reflect and plants under roof eaves may require closer monitoring. During the hot, summer months, disregard natural rainfall as the rain produced during these periods produces mostly runoff and contributes little, if any, to increasing ground moisture.
· Maintain a 3” mulch layer. This will help to conserve ground moisture, prevent weeds and retain moisture. Remember, excess amounts of mulch can result in poor air circulation and reduce plant vigor.
· We recommend using a balanced fertilizer (i.e., 12-12-12) plant food with micronutrients. Be sure to follow label instructions.