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Trim Creations
05-16-2004, 11:41 PM
Whats is every bodys opinion on takeing the metal baskets off or leaveing them on a tree.

AL Inc
05-17-2004, 12:45 AM
I was taught to leave the baskets on. By removing them, you risk losing all of the soil off the root ball. I try to remove as much of the burlap as I can, but always leave the basket. So far, it has worked for me.

JB1
05-17-2004, 09:04 AM
I have heard the pro's and cons for leaving them on and taking them off, anymore I just flip a coin and decide.

Rtom45
05-17-2004, 01:02 PM
Having moved literally thousands of trees when I was younger and worked for a wholesale nursery/landscaper, I would say leave them on. We worked mostly commercial accounts, and all plant material was guaranteed for a year. We never removed baskets. If the ball was tied with treated rope, we cut the rope away from the tree, if it was untreated we left it there. If we had treated burlap, we also cut that away at the top of the ball. I was with that company about 7 years and never saw a problem. I also worked for a College in the area after that and we bought plant material from the same company with never a problem.

Grassmechanic
05-17-2004, 02:19 PM
I always remove both burlap and baskets. Been doing it for well over 20 years.

NCSULandscaper
05-17-2004, 05:15 PM
I have done it both ways, i have taken the backets off and left them on and still no difference in the outcome, it makes no difference. The basket will rust away after a period of time as well as the burlap, plus the roots are stong enough to puncture through the burlap.

paponte
05-17-2004, 06:36 PM
Most places recommend bending the tops of the basket over as well as the burlap, but leaving them on. Both will decompose over time. ;)

Turfdude
05-17-2004, 08:56 PM
It all depends on the soil inside of the basket. IMHO, its probably better to remove when possible. However, sometimes the ball can split, or totally fall apart. It is very important to minimally untie the burlap and twine from the trunk of the shrub or tree. Any msnmade burlap or nylon type twine should be removed. I recommend not purchasing shrubs in nylon or synthetic burlap. AS far as the cages rusting or rotting away ... HELLO they're galvanized. They may rust after 50+ years, but definately not in 10. What we've been doing as of late is removing the top 1/3 of the cage, untying all burlap, folding into hole and backfilling. Should you decide to remove the cage, I always recommend placing the plant material on the edge of the hole, cutting the cage vertically, then peeling the cage away from the ball and lowering gently into the hole. Good luck whichever you decide. Afterall, planted either way, the material should outlast your warranty period.

NCSULandscaper
05-17-2004, 09:46 PM
your baskets may be galvanized, but the ones i get from my supplier are not. So it wont take but a year or so for it to rust away.

Trim Creations
05-18-2004, 01:58 AM
I was also tought to leave them on, Never ??? before this week and the guy was vety up set that I left them on so I had to pull them back up and take them off. to make the costumer always right........................ Thanks to all the answers they were very informitive and helped ease my mind.

D Felix
05-19-2004, 11:15 PM
Contrary to popular belief, the baskets DO NOT rust away!!!!

If every piece of metal in the ground rusts away, why is it that metal is still being pulled from the ground on numerous Civil and Revolutionary War battlefields??? That metal was weaker than any that is produced today, so it should rust faster............. Think about it. It takes oxygen and water to oxidize iron, and there is not enough oxygen surrounding any one piece of metal in the ground to support oxidation..............

Turfdude hit the nail on the head. What we generally do is untie/cut the ropes on top of the ball, excavate carefully to find the root flare, dig the hole according to the depth of the flare (could be anywhere from 0-8 inches down inside the ball, though it is VERY rare it's right at the top), set the tree in the hole, then use bolt cutters to cut the top of the basket off, usually the top section below the "ears".

ALWAYS remove the ropes, treated or untreated. With the burlap, at least pull it away from the trunk. Yes, the burlap will decompose over time, usually it takes a couple of years to fully decompose. The basket, however, won't.

If you're gonna do it, do it right! In all reality, the basket should be completely removed, however, 99% of the time, it just isn't practical.

How many of you find the root flare? How many of you search for girdling/potential girdling roots?


Dan

D Felix
05-19-2004, 11:27 PM
Forgot to add that leaving the basket on when planting also makes it easier to replace the tree when it dies.:rolleyes::D


Dan

neal-wolbertsinc
05-19-2004, 11:33 PM
Having recently viewed a forensics investigation of dying and dead trees with a plant pathologist, I would recommend cutting the baskets so there is no complete squares left as you back fill or lower the cages into the ground. It doesn't take long for roots to grow to the size of the openings in the baskets leading to possible problems. I don't think you'll find a certified arborist that will support leaving them intact or leaving any ties at all on at planting. Usually the stems are buried with soil when you open a b&b or cage and that soil should be removed so the trunk flare is visible after planting. I've removed lots of soil from trunks of ailing trees over the years and found that to be a contributing factor in tree decline. Check the ISA (Inter. Society of Arborculture) website for more info on planting recommendations. Neal

Rollacosta
05-20-2004, 05:44 PM
i would say its very important to remove the steel ''GAOL'' from around the tree roots as you should be incouraging the roots to spread as much as they can out..and not leave them constricted in a cage

NCSULandscaper
05-20-2004, 08:40 PM
There is no way possible for a wire basket to constrict root growth.

TREEGODFATHER
05-21-2004, 02:32 AM
Wire baskets can and do girdle roots and stems. If at all possible, they should be removed.

If you do need to leave it on, cut all the horizontal wires, so developing roots and growing stems can easily spread the basket.

kris
05-22-2004, 07:27 AM
That must have been very interesting.

Originally posted by neal-wolbertsinc
Having recently viewed a forensics investigation of dying and dead trees with a plant pathologist,

The ol "should I remove the baskets" thread.

I've dug up wire baskets from years and years later.

We remove the top one third of string, burlap, and wire basket.

Sure it may be best to remove it all but it is just unrealistic IMO.

They don't make baskets as strong as they use to and chances are the welds will break before any girdling of roots will take place.

We start a caliper tree planting (150) on Tuesday. Nothing I have read here will change our method.

Katwalk
05-22-2004, 07:56 AM
We also take the top at least one third of the basket and burlap. Cut the basket with bolt cutters and cut the burlap with a knife. We also slice open the remaining burlap in the bottom of the basket to create an easier path for the roots. Most of the trees we replace have basket and burlap still on them.

D Felix
05-22-2004, 11:38 AM
There is no way possible for a wire basket to constrict root growth.

If that is what you think, find a tree that is about 4-6 diameter. Take a piece of wire about the same size as the wire basket would be. Wrap it around the trunk and twist together. Leave it there. See how long it takes for the tree to die.

That is in effect what you are doing by leaving the basket intact, only with the roots. When the roots reach the 4-6" size (the tree will probably be bigger than that), you will constrict and girdle the roots with the basket. It will take years for it to show up, maybe by then you will be long gone from the business and it will be someone else's problem to deal with.............

It doesn't take that much longer to dig the hole bigger to allow for getting bolt cutters in to cut off the basket. At least the top 1/3 of it. The vast majority of the roots will be in the top foot of soil anyway, so the bottom portion of the basket will seldom cause major problems down the road.

Eric- Do you remember the thread over on AS where the guy had someone in to air spade around his trees and found baskets, girdling roots, etc? I haven't had time to search for it, but it would be another good case for what we have said thus far.............


Dan

NCSULandscaper
05-22-2004, 12:43 PM
Originally posted by kris

The ol "should I remove the baskets" thread.

I've dug up wire baskets from years and years later.

We remove the top one third of string, burlap, and wire basket.

Sure it may be best to remove it all but it is just unrealistic IMO.

They don't make baskets as strong as they use to and chances are the welds will break before any girdling of roots will take place.


I agree with you, the welds on baskets now will not hold up. Still will not change my methods, and will not remove the basket. Everything that has been said was using old baskets that was made strong, not new ones. Sorry but you have not changed my mind at all.

TREEGODFATHER
05-22-2004, 12:52 PM
Job security for me.

D Felix
05-23-2004, 01:19 PM
Here's the thread over on AS I was talking about.

Everyone, do a little reading on this thread, and over on AS as a whole. There's a LOT of knowledge over there when it comes to trees!
Here's the link: http://www.arboristsite.com/showthread.php?s=&threadid=9640


Dan

Grassmechanic
05-23-2004, 03:09 PM
Timing is everything with this thread. Had to replace a 12' arb yesterday for a client. Upon removal, basket and burlap were clearly intact. Looked like the plant was planted last season. I asked the homeowner how long that plant had been there. He had no idea, as it was there when he bought the house 8 years ago.