How to Pick the Perfect Tree
Fall is quickly approaching, and that means it’s almost tree planting season here in Texas! There are several things to consider when selecting a tree, but you can use some of our tips to help you pick the perfect one.
- Before buying one, realize that different trees thrive in different areas and conditions. Here are some steps to get a good idea of the tree species that would work best for where you want to plant. Learn what trees generally do well in your hardiness zone.
- Determine the soil type and sun exposure of the specific planting location.
- Decide what function the tree will have in its planting location. Is it to shade a play area, reduce energy bills, provide aesthetics, add value or a combination?
- If you are unsure how to determine these or are looking for further guidance, the Arbor Day Foundation* has several useful tools, including the Tree Wizard, to help you make an educated choice.
After determining the species that interests you, you can head to a local nursery to pick your tree of choice. Here are some helpful tips on what to look for in a healthy tree.
- A quick test is to see what the tree does when you push the trunk back and forth. A tree with good roots will bend and stay firm in the soil, while a tree with poor roots will lean over.* Further examine the ones that pass the test and eliminate the others.
- Look for plentiful roots and root hairs that are moist and either white or light in color.
- Avoid circling roots in containerized trees but still make sure that the soil and roots are held well together.* If you already purchased a tree with circling roots, you can cut them before planting.
- Balled and burlapped trees should have a root ball that is firm and appropriate for the tree’s size.*
- Evenly green leaves are healthy while two toned or yellowing leaves can be a sign of chlorosis.
- Look for trees with branches that start low. This will aid in its growth and help prevent sun damage.*
- Prioritize trunk caliper over tree height.
After you’ve picked the perfect tree, you can add Pellet 3-IA to give it a jump start. This specialized pellet helps root development and improves overall tree health and appearance. Both you and your tree will be thankful!