Pick the right season to plant

In Metro Vancouver, planting trees and shrubs in the fall will give them an advantage over those planted in winter or spring.  This is because the soil is warmer in the fall, and may have better moisture and aeration conditions.  Roots will have more time for growth before there is an increased demand for water in the spring.

Balled-and-burlap (B&B) trees and container plants can be planted almost year round, although B&B plants are usually planted soon after they are dug.

Inspect the trees before planting

Trees should be carefully inspected before or during delivery to ensure they meet quality standards for root quality and branch formation.

Prepare the tree

All B&B trees should have the nylon ropes cut, and the burlap should be pulled approximately 1/3rd of the way down the trunk.

Container grown trees should have the container completely removed.

Setting the plant

The planting hole should be at least twice the diameter of the container or root ball to give adequate space for back-fill.

Gently place the tree in the hole and orient it to best suit the environment (aim the side with the most branches into the wind, orient the side with the lowest branches toward areas of least activity. This will reduce the amount of subsequent pruning).

Begin to back-fill the hole.  In most cases, the soil dug from the planting hole is satisfactory for back-fill, although adding organic matter is often recommended.  Use water to settle the soil once the hole is back-filled half way, and again once the back-filling is complete.  This will help pack and settle the soil.

Watering the Tree

Watering is climate dependent; however, it is best undertaken in long, infrequent sessions.  Watering for a few hours every 3-4 days promotes healthy, deep root growth, which is essential for tree stability.  Trees which are watered daily develop a very shallow root system, as water is provided daily and is at the surface.