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Moving Blue Spruce

Discussion in 'Landscape Architecture and Design' started by turfquip, Nov 5, 2001.

  1. turfquip

    turfquip LawnSite Senior Member
    Posts: 860

    Hi guys,

    I have the job of transplanting three Colorado Blue Spruce (about 5') that someone had mistakenly used as a row planting next to a house...all lined up as soldiers.

    I am going to move them into the back yard on about 15' spacing. What size root ball should I dig on these? The customer is very concerned about survivability (naturally) so any advice or rules of thumb would sure be appreciated.

  2. captdevo

    captdevo LawnSite Senior Member
    Posts: 932


    i moved one about that size last fall.

    i made the ball width a foot less than the canopy width, and depth was approx. 18".

    This one has done very well. (without even root pruning)

    i watered it well with root stimulator and added a slow release osmocote fertilizer.

    they are very tough trees you should have no problems, especially this time of year.

  3. steveair

    steveair LawnSite Bronze Member
    Posts: 1,073

    What size root ball?

    I would say roughly the size of of the bucket on the backhoe, but's just me:)
  4. SCL

    SCL LawnSite Senior Member
    Posts: 543

    Just picked up 12 5'-6' White spruce, average root ball was around 18" bout the size of a beach ball. This is a great question for Arborsite.com
  5. Runner

    Runner LawnSite Fanatic
    Posts: 13,496

    If you're handling these things, especially at this time of year, be VERY CAREFUL and GENTLE with these balls, as to not knock off the hairs on the roots, as these are crucial at this time of year for when the tree starts feeding again in the spring.
  6. cuttingedgelawncare

    cuttingedgelawncare LawnSite Member
    Posts: 23

    I worked at a tree farm for a couple of years and a good rule

    of thumb they used is 1ft. of ball (width) for every 1in. of diameter

    of the trunk. I usually shave them down some though so they

    wont be quite as heavy.

    Works well for me. :D
  7. mdb landscaping

    mdb landscaping LawnSite Silver Member
    Posts: 2,205

    i agree with capt devo. about a foot in from the drip line should be good. wider the better. may cost some extra hours of digging, but you wont damage as many roots the farther out you go.

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