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landscape installation tips

Discussion in 'Landscape Architecture and Design' started by grassmasterswilson, Feb 1, 2012.

  1. grassmasterswilson

    grassmasterswilson LawnSite Platinum Member
    from nc
    Messages: 4,923

    So I'm a mowing/applications guy and decided to take on a overhaul of my landscape at my personal home. I hired a designer who has given my a plan and selected the proper plants for my zone and location.

    I'm interested in tips and hints on installation. Is it necessary to fertilize or mix compost with my back fill? I'm in sandy loam soil and it looks pretty healthy.

    I've also seen different planting depth articles. Some say leave the potted root ball a little above soil level to allow for water run off and to prevent drowning. The other says to plant lower to have the "bowl" in order to hold water. So what's the best method.
  2. TerraJeeps

    TerraJeeps LawnSite Member
    Messages: 22

    Its is always a great idea to mix in compost and soil conditioner with your planting bed soil. It will be 100 times easier to adress the issue now than to worry about it later. Just spread 1-2 inches on top and then till it in, also add lime if needed accoding to a soil test.

    Plants should never be planted below grade to hold water. I like to plant about an inch above the soil to allow for compaction and decay of the mulch to fill in. Planting too high usually won't hurt a plant while too deep will rot the crown in a couple years. You can still install a raised soil area around the tree to hold water, but a soaker hose would be best for watering newly installed plants.
  3. andersman02

    andersman02 LawnSite Senior Member
    Messages: 562

    i said this in your other post but again, very rarely, if ever, do you want to plant below grade, yes it will hold water, BUT you shouldnt be planting plants that can not handle the native environmental conditions. only time you should trully need to water is in the first couple of weeks while the plant is rooting in. if you plant it deep it will hold water and eventually cause root/crown rot

    edit- only time planting slightly deeper is on plants such as heuchera with shallow root systems that are prone to frost heaving
  4. Isobel

    Isobel LawnSite Senior Member
    Messages: 548

    looks healthy? don't go on looks. Take soil samples, and send them out to your local extension school. When you get the results back you can figure out how to amend your soil, or if of pH needs to be addressed.

    In terms of planting, don't plant too low otherwise you'll rot the plant. Leave it a little high than the grade after mulch. The plant will settle down into the bed over the first 1-2 years.

    When planting make sure you've loosened the soil, and broken up your root balls on each plant, before planting.

    good luck.
  5. Executive Landscape

    Executive Landscape LawnSite Member
    Messages: 17

    You should post your design, thats the most important element and where the real help can be.
  6. Executive Landscape

    Executive Landscape LawnSite Member
    Messages: 17

    Let me rephrase that, the above installation tips are all very good and very important. Every great redesign project begins with a great design, its crucial to get some good advice for that aspect as well

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