How To Install Your New Plants

You're all ready to go!  You have all your plants purchased and now what?  Installing your plants properly can help you avoid the pitfalls many homeowners experience with failed efforts.  In any "how to" blog, it can be as helpful to know what not to do as much as the proper way to proceed.  Nothing can be more disappointing than all this energy and optimism in planting your flower bed than going through all the work, expense, and high hopes of a new and enduring landscape than things going South fast. The following is a list of do's and don'ts for installing your new plants.  


1. When purchasing your plants, be ready to install them immediately!  I run into so many homeowners that have purchased plants on a particular day with the thought that they'll just put them in the driveway until they're ready.  Bad choice!  You will never be able to keep up with watering them sufficiently in those pots exposed out of the soil especially if its warm.  At the nursery, we irrigate containers sometimes up to 3 and 4 times a day in these pots to keep them moist.  Potted plants dry out quickly as their root systems are usually root bound in the containers.  They also dry out quickly when exposed on top of the ground with no mulch or soil.  Wait until you're ready to go in the same day to purchase.

2.  When you take the plant out of the pot, (do not plant while in the pots) break up approx 1/2 inch of the bottom roots to promote quicker growth and attaching to the soil around it.

3.  Water the plant well before you install.

4.  Make sure you leave proper spacing according to the varieties your installing and keep in mind the personal preference you have in accomplishing the end result you're looking for.

5.  Make sure the hole you dig is twice the size of the root ball.  Put potting soil in the bottom of the hole so that when you place the plant inside the top of the soil in the container it's level with the current level of the soil already there.

6.  After placing the plant in the hole, fill in around the sides with potting soil as well.  Gently pack soil in but not too much.  You want to try to keep the soil from settling around the plant but don't want the soil so compressed that the roots system cannot easily push through to establish itself firmly and quickly.

7.  Dead head any fading or dying flowers.

8.  Perhaps this is the most important point:  Water a newly installed plant EVERY DAY for the first 30 days.  Don't skimp on this!  The compressed root ball cannot absorb moisture as a well establish plant as the roots are not established in the surrounding soil.  Also don't just sprinkle the top with water this does no good at all.  Put the hose directly where the root ball is to get the water to where it matters and be able to water much quicker.  Depending on what type of plants you install, you may need to take a little pressure off the flow of water.  After the first 30 days then you can go to every other day in watering.  Then after two months, your regular irrigation cycle should be fine.

9.  Always add mulch, pine straw, organic material etc. all around the base of the plant at ground level.  Usually approx 3" deep.  Mulch is just like insulation in your home,  it keeps the plant insulated from harsh temps in both winter and summer.  It also help the roots maintain moisture.  

10. Fertilize your new plants with a time released product and follow direction on the lable. 


There you have it.  If you follow these simple guidelines it will greatly enhance your success rate.  If you would like Holiday's to come to your home and give you an estimate on having all this done in a professional way with a warranty, please give us a call at 904-613-9918.