Q and A: canning beans, transplanting fruit trees, and canning with kids — 1 Comment

  1. Joyce, have the holes for your trees ready, and fill them with water before you put the trees in them so you are putting the trees in a little pond. Put the tree in slowly, some water will slop out when the tree goes in, that’s OK, it will settle in without any more root damage. Fill the hole with dirt while the water is in it. Depending on how large the trees are and the branch pattern, it can also help to prune the branches back by about 1/3 and carefully remove any blossoms so the tree isn’t trying to grow fruit this year. There’s a drastic tree salvage technique for fully leafed out trees that involves stripping all the leaves off (you’ll lose the apple crop too) and then planting the tree. The reason for doing this is that then the limited roots left can re-establish without having to support the growth of leaves and a crop. You need a long enough growing season for new leaves to grow before winter. Fruit trees that lose most or all of their leaves early in the growing season because of frost or hail will re-grow leaves – that’s the natural equivalent of you stripping the leaves off. But the tree needs leaves to store carbohydrates to get it through the winter with enough energy to leaf out next spring, so you’ll have to evaluate your situation. And as Jackie said, be sure to keep the trees mulched and well watered, but don’t use fertilizer this year. If you have windy, freeze-thaw winter conditions you might want to wrap the tree trunks all the way up to the first branches after the trees go into dormancy.