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Discussion in 'Landscape Architecture and Design' started by yardsmith, Apr 16, 2000.

  1. yardsmith

    yardsmith LawnSite Senior Member
    from Ohio
    Posts: 627

    Will be digging up a 36&quot; Dwarf Alberta Spruce (ain't a dwarf no more) this coming weekend that hasn't been trimmed in about a year or 2.<br>How long should I wait after re-planting to prune it back to a nice shape? I figured after transplanting would be better than before. Thanks<p>----------<br>Smitty ô¿ô<br>
  2. paul

    paul Lawnsite Addict
    Posts: 1,625

    OK don't prune it. The only thing you can do is cut new growth back. If you have all ready lost part of the plant due to others that are close to it (bare areas) too bad won't regrow or put on new growth.<p>----------<br>paul<br>
  3. Stonehenge

    Stonehenge LawnSite Bronze Member
    from Midwest
    Posts: 1,277

    If you spread apart some of the branches and look inside, you'll see that it's only green on the outside few inches - the inside, having not seen the sun in years, has lost it's foliage. So, pruning is out, whether before or after. Do remove any dead branches. It'll leave bare spots, but if you want, you can train other nearby branches to grow there to cover (using string, pulling and tying the branches over the open spot).<p>You could trim new growth as Paul mentioned, but that's about it.
  4. JasonPC

    JasonPC LawnSite Member
    Posts: 79

    Oh no! I pruned 6 rhodies that I transplanted last week right after I transplanted them. I never knew you couldn't prune after you transplant. What was I thinking?? Any recommendations about steps to take to make sure they don't die? Any input would be greatly appreciated.<p>
  5. Evan528

    Evan528 LawnSite Silver Member
    Posts: 2,144

    pruning after you transplant is the best thing you can do.... by cutting some of the outer branches off you are compensating for any roots that were cut in the process of the digging it up! that gives it the best chance of making it!
  6. paul

    paul Lawnsite Addict
    Posts: 1,625

    Jason I was talking about spruce not broad leaf evergreens or deciduous plants. <p>Pruning of these plants should be done.<br>sorry if i didn't explaine it fully<p>----------<br>paul<br>
  7. Stonehenge

    Stonehenge LawnSite Bronze Member
    from Midwest
    Posts: 1,277

    Just to throw this out there - <p>I've heard or read somewhere that the full foliage on a plant helps to drive root growth, and trimming prior to or after transplanting will hurt that process. I personally follow the other method (pruning to compensate for lost roots), but had heard the flip side of the coin. Food for thought, I guess.
  8. steveair

    steveair LawnSite Bronze Member
    Posts: 1,073

    Stone, you are right.<p>Just think about the what the plant is doing. If you transplant it, you are cutting off a large % of its root system.<br>If you prune it before or after the transplant, then the plant sees the loss of top growth, and has to compensate for it. If you prune the plant, it will spend valuable resources trying to replace its foliage instead of dedicating all its resources to its roots, which are in a critical period after transplanting. Only thing that should be pruned are dead/diseased branches. This helps because the plant still is sending valuable resources to the dead branches, or at least trying to, instead of concentrating them on more critical areas like roots and new top growth.<p>One trick I learned for transplanting larger/expensive materials is mulch rooting. If I have a job with valuable or larger plants to be transplanted, I go to the job about a month before and dig out around the plants root zone. Then I replace the dirt with mulch. What happens is the roots grow into the mulch and become real 'fibrous' <p>When its time to transplant, you remove the tree and the mulch falls right off and you get a nice zone of 'fibrous' roots surrounding the ball. Gives the plant a great start then when you finally plant it back in its resting spot. <p>steveair<br>
  9. Stonehenge

    Stonehenge LawnSite Bronze Member
    from Midwest
    Posts: 1,277

    Steveair - That's a slick idea.

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