Fall is arguably the best season of the year. Not only does it bring football, the kids going back to school, pumpkin flavored everything and sweater weather… it also brings colorful leaves! The leaves on the trees change colors before they fall for the winter. What many people don’t realize though, is autumn is an excellent time to plant trees, too. The spring may be the season for planting lots of other things such as flowers, but autumn is actually the best season for planting a tree.
One benefit of planting trees in the fall is that autumn has typically more mild and wet weather than other times of the year. A tree that is planted now has a chance to grow and get established in its roots before the summer heat arrives. Roots continue to grow as long as the temperature isn’t extremely cold. This allows the tree to get a head start before the hot and dry summer. This especially works for areas that see mild winters and very strong heat in the spring and summer months. But even if you have decently cold winters, fall is still the most opportune time to plant trees. Fall is the best season to plant trees no matter the location you are planting the tree in.
Another benefit of planting trees in the fall is that nurseries usually offer sales on a lot of their plants, including trees, because they are looking to get rid of some of their inventory before winter comes and people stop planning altogether (except indoor plants). So shop around for the type of tree you want during the summer, but wait for the end of summer deals to buy the exact tree you want.
There are some better times in the fall that you want to try to get your tree planted in the ground. The most ideal times are from Labor Day through Columbus Day. This makes sure they can maximize the amount of time they are in the ground before winter comes, so they can withstand strong winds or snow. Although the weather is wetter and better for planting trees, you still need to make sure you are consistently watering your newly planted tree so it can have the proper sustenance to grow its roots.
There is a common misconception that Arbor Day and the days surrounding it are the best times to plant a tree, but this is incorrect. Most states’ Arbor Days fall in April, but spring is not the best time for plants to start growing. They should already have established some roots so they can last throughout the entire hot summer. If you do plant a tree in the spring you are going to have to make sure you are consistently watering it throughout the rest of spring and into the summer, which can be a hassle.
When planting your tree, choosing the right season to plant is very important. But there are several other factors to figure in, as well, when looking to plant a tree! Don’t forget these important aspects such as the type of soil, the placement of the tree, the surrounding plants or structures and the amount of sunlight the tree can get. Using the right type of fertilizer can also help your trees get the nutrients they need to grow
Stewart Scott is the owner of Cevet Tree Care, offers tree trimming services in Columbia, Mo.