With leaves changing hue and herbaceous plants beginning to dieback, many less experienced gardeners look upon autumn as the end of growing season. In contrast, professional gardeners and landscapers generally see it as the beginning - a key time for planting trees and shrubs.
Before planting there are a number of important considerations to take in to account. Here Ian Todd, ICL technical area sales manager for Scotland, outlines a few key points worth considering.
- First and foremost, although sometimes overlooked, is the species suited to the site? Factors to consider include geography within the UK, aspect and soil type. If in doubt, before ordering speak to the nursery for advice.
- To encourage good establishment, inspect the soil at the site and adjust accordingly. If the soil appears compacted consider adding a mulch to boost aeration.
- To aid establishment, don’t overlook weed suppression. After planting, ideally the area around the tree or shrubs should be top dressed with a bark mulch, to a depth of about 2 inch, to help prevent weeds germination.
- Vine weevil. If planting species, such as Rhododendron, which are particularly vulnerable to vine weevil check to see if the nursery has treated with Exemptor. Alternative biological options, such as Met52 and pathogenic nematodes are available, but be aware that these can be temperature sensitive and results can vary depending on where you are in the country.
- Does the plant have sufficient nutrition? Again, it is worth contacting the nursery to find out what, if any, nutrition is present in the growing media. It is possible a controlled release product in the growing media may tide the plant over for a month or two. Factor this in when planting and consider applying a topdress in due course. In a bid to simplify this process, ICL has recently launched Osmocote PrePlant - a new concept to provide a cost effective solution for landscapers when planting out.
Containing fully coated granules, Osmocote PrePlant provides full season nutrition for plants in a single application, with minimal leaching. While helping to save labour - by eliminating the need for topdressing during the season – it has been carefully formulated to give plants the best possible start.
Suitable for a wide range of trees and plants including Rhododendrons, Azaleas and Buxus, without fear of root scorching, Osmocote PrePlant is designed to help growers and landscapers add value to their offering and help boost incremental sales to the landscaping sector. It is available in handy 1kg packs to avoid wastage.
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