It may seem counterintuitive to suggest planting anything in the fall. The ground is about to freeze over and daylight is shorter. Plus, it’s not like you’re going to be out watering when the temperatures hit freezing. However, now is the perfect time to plant shrubs.
Planting shrubs this time of year gives the bush a head start in the spring. The ground is still warm enough to develop root growth, establishing the shrub before winter. In fact, the roots will continue to grow into the winter and until the ground completely freezes over. Remember, just because there is snow on the ground doesn’t mean it’s frozen all the way through. By the time the warmer weather hits, the shrub or bush will be established enough to flourish in the spring.
What type of shrub you wish to plant determines how it’s planted. Larger shrubs are balled at the root and covered in burlap. Smaller bushes may be planted unwrapped, or what’s known as bareroot. Finally, container-grown shrubs could be either, depending on the size. Be sure to dig out a hole that is twice as wide as the root, but no deeper.
When planting a shrub, give the root ball a thorough soaking so it has plenty of water. Continue to water at the root weekly until the ground freezes. Generally, you shouldn’t need to fertilize this time of year. If the soil is poor however, use a time release fertilizer capsule to slowly deliver nutrients to the soil.
Need help planting trees or shrubs in the fall? We’d love to hear about them! Send us your fall planting pride. Email us at firstname.lastname@example.org or call us any time at one of our two numbers, (847) 359-1951 or (847) 253-1961.