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Planting Guide 

Steps to Follow:

A few simple steps & tricks to help your plant thrive and grow.

1. Prepare the soil

Rule of thumb: Dig your hole twice the diameter of the pot it came in and around the same depth as the height of the pot. If the soil is poor (e.g. heavy clay or very sandy), it's a good idea to incorporate quality organic matter into the bottom of the hole to improve the soils characteristics. Potting mix or well composted material will do.

3. Position plant & back-fill the hole

Position your plant in the prepared hole and orientate it in the desired direction. Ensure that it is not sitting too low in the hole to avoid soil piling around the stem or trunk. The back-filled soil should be level with base of the stem/trunk. If it's a grafted species, ensure the graft union is well clear of the soil level. Fill the excess soil back into the hole around the plant, compacting it lightly to remove air pockets. it's a good idea to water the plant in. If the plant is on a slope with excess water run-off, a shallow well can help retain the water as it soaks into the soil.

5. Monitor 

it's important to monitor your plants whilst they establish over the first couple of years, particularly over the warmer months or during periods of heavy rain. A lack of adequate irrigation during summer can quickly lead to plant death (Early signs include prolonged foliage wilting, leaf-drop and dry or cracked soil). Conversely over-watering can be as detrimental to your plant's health.  Compacted soils or heavy clay lack adequate drainage, this can be problematic over periods of heavy rain or excessive irrigation and often leads to stunted/diseased plants or early death (Signs include water pooling in the surrounding soil over a prolonged period and yellowing or darkening of the leaves). Consulting a professional horticulturist is recommended if issue can't be accurately diagnosed. 

2. Prepare your plant

Remove the plant from its pot and tease its roots apart to reduce the risk of it root-binding itself over time. Plants that have roots that are heavily pot-bound may need to be cut with a sharp, clean instrument. Removing a portion of the pot-bound roots can encourage healthy new root growth over time. Exercise caution- removing too much of the root system will impact the health of the plant. 

4. Mulch, stake and fertilise 

Mulch around the base of the plant with a good quality organic mulch once you've finished planting. Be sure not pile mulch around the stem or trunk as it can lead to various diseases (leave a small bare circle around the stem).

Most trees, particularly if they are advanced, will benefit from staking in their first couple of years whilst they establish roots. Use 2 or 3 hardwood stakes positioned outside of the diameter of the hole. Make loop of twine or webbing between each stake and the stem. It's important to allow to the tree some movement once staked. The tree will strengthen over time as it sways in the wind. A rigidly bound stem will not develop adequate stem strength, leading to breakage problems down the track.

Fertilise in the growing season  monthly using an all-purpose or native plant all-purpose granular or liquid fertiliser. If you notice a lot of water runoff, a soil wetter may be benefical.

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