With all the ways there are to brighten your home and increase your property value, there is little that can match the natural beauty and grace of planting a new tree for your home! If you have talked it over with your family, chosen the type of tree you would like, and picked the perfect spot for your new family tree to grow, then it’s time to take the first steps towards planting the tree! Of course, as the little sprout begins to grow, make sure you give it the best possible start: Contact the professionals at Whatcom Tree Service today for unparalleled care and attention to detail for your tree. Today, we would like to share the best ways to prepare for the new tree in your yard. Here are the steps you need to take when planting a tree purchased from a nursery that has come in a pot or other container:


A tree needs a place to take root and grow! It also needs plenty of space for its roots to travel to as it grows. To start, dig a hole that is three to four times wider than the container is. This hole should have sloping sides, similar to a saucer, in order to allow proper room for root growth. Next, carefully pull the tree out of the container while keeping the soil around the tree’s roots intact. A great tip to make this step easier is to tap the outside of the container to loosen up the edges. Pull the tree out, but do so slowly and carefully – you don’t want the roots to separate.


Sometimes trees that are growing within a container have a tendency to become root-bound. If this is happening to your baby tree, just cut a small X across the bottom of the root ball and four vertical cuts on the side of the root ball with a sharp knife. Once the tree has been freed from the container, place the tree in the middle of the hole. Make sure the hole isn’t too deep! If the root collar is sitting below the top of the hole, put some soil under the tree so this root flare will be a little bit above the ground level. Use your soil to secure the tree in place, then fill the rest in firmly. Check to see that there are no air pockets, and continue to fill until the soil is just below the root collar.


In order to ensure your baby tree gets as much water as it needs, you need to create a water-holding basin around the hole of the tree. Water the tree thoroughly, and allow the water to soak in entirely. Once all the water has soaked in, use protective mulch to surround the tree. We recommend making this mulch two to four inches deep in about a three-foot diameter around the base of the tree. Don’t let it touch the trunk, though!

Water Regularly

You will want to ensure that the soil and the mulch surrounding your trees stay moist, but check to see that they are not yet soggy. Whenever you experience dry weather at your Bellingham home, remember to water your tree generously anywhere from once per week to once every ten days during the first year of its growth.


Check to see that all tags and labels have been removed from your tree, as these can inhibit their growth. Also, if you see any dead or dying branches, prune them to keep your tree as healthy as possible. Remember, however, to never use fertilizer, potting soil, or any other chemicals on your newly planted trees. These harsh chemicals are much stronger than the little tree and will likely kill it.

Contact Us

Baby trees need much more attention and care than some people realize, which is why it never hurts to call in professionals. We at Whatcom Tree Service are proud to serve your Bellingham home, no matter what you need done for your trees. We can handle stump removal, routine tree service and maintenance, pruning, and just about anything else. If you want to learn more about our services, feel free to contact us today!