Right now is perfect time to plant trees

Published 12:00 am Tuesday, January 17, 2006

I attended a very good seminar on the 11th. It was on landscaping with trees.

Right now is the perfect time to plant trees. We are getting a nice supply of rain with some spring-like temperatures, so the soil is fairly easy to dig in.

Always remember to dig your hole about twice the size of the root ball.

Also, you should

make sure to dig the hole deeper than the root ball.

However, you should always back fill the depth of the hole.

The root ball of the tree should never be below soil line. I actually prefer to leave a couple of inches of the root ball above the soil line in order for water to go directly to the roots.

This process also helps to keep pathogens and insects from easily getting onto your tree&8217;s trunk.

One thing that I definitely learned at the seminar is that you shouldn&8217;t even consider trying to get grass to grow under your trees.

If I were you, I&8217;d choose from the broad selection of shade loving perennial plants and groundcovers.

Ajuga or dwarf mondo grass work well under trees.

Now let&8217;s talk about trees.

Be sure to choose a tree that will work for your landscape.

For example, the Southern Magnolia grows to about 110 feet tall whereas the Little Gem is a dwarf variety.

Dwarf is a relative term in the nursery industry.

The dwarf Little Gem grows to between 35 to 50 feet tall.

Consider where the trees will be and how much room to allow them at maturity.

As we count down the days to Groundhog Day, I wonder what gifts I should buy for my gardening friends?

I&8217;m still counting the days till Groundhog Day.

For more on these and other gardening tips, listen to Home Grown Tomatoes every Saturday morning from 6-8 a.m. on 101.1 FM or log on to HGTradio.net