MollieCWaller
Newly Registered
Posts: 3
Joined: Sun Sep 20, 2009 2:07 pm
Location: Suburban Chicago, IL

Transplanting advice needed

Hi. I'm looking for some advice on moving some plants. All are finishing their first year planted. One rhododendron got too much late day sun and three wygelias overtook some hydrangeas. What do I need to know to successfully transplant them? Specifically, how far away from the plant should I dig in order to keep the roots intact? How far down should I dig? Should I use root stimulator when transplanted? Thanks for any advice.

User avatar
rainbowgardener
Super Green Thumb
Posts: 25303
Joined: Sun Feb 15, 2009 11:04 pm
Location: TN/GA 7b

transplanting shrubs

Now is a good time to be doing it. Key to planting/ transplanting shrubs is BIG HOLES! You will know how far out from the trunk to dig by when the roots you are digging into are getting tiny. Dig a good sized root ball that includes all the big roots.

Dig your hole, first but you are going to want it twice as deep and wide as the root ball. Then fill the hole back in with soil mixed with compost, manure, bone meal, etc so that the plant sits at the same level it did before. Set the plant in, fill the hole part way up, water well. Fill the hole the rest of the way up, tamping it down a bit and water well again.

You may want to trim the plant back some, so that the newly (re) establishing roots have less burden of top growth to support. Root stimulator shouldn't be necessary if you dug a good root ball. Keep it moist (but not wet) until frost comes.

User avatar
Kisal
Mod Emeritus
Posts: 7648
Joined: Tue Jun 24, 2008 5:04 am
Location: Oregon

You won't have any problem with the rhodie. They can be transplanted any time of year, as long as you give them plenty of water after you get them back in the ground. I've even moved them in July and August and had them do really well.

They don't have a very big root systems. I did have to have a couple of guys lift one that was 8 feet tall into a wheelbarrow and move it for me, though. For rhodies and azaleas up to about 4 or 5 feet, I just set the root ball on a tarp and pull it to the new location. The root ball of my 8' tall plant was only about 2 1/2 or 3 feet in diameter by about 18" deep. For a plant that's only been in the ground for 1 year, I'd guess not much bigger than when you took it out of its original pot. :)
"Isn't it enough to see that a garden is beautiful without having to believe that there are fairies at the bottom of it too?" - Douglas Adams

MollieCWaller
Newly Registered
Posts: 3
Joined: Sun Sep 20, 2009 2:07 pm
Location: Suburban Chicago, IL

Transplanting advice needed

Thanks for the replies, I truly appreciate the info. I'll get digging this weekend. My rhodie is only one foot tall but I know someday it will be 4-5 feet. Thanks again.

Return to “What Doesn't Fit Elsewhere”