Home > Great Big Greenhouse Blog > June 2016 > IN THE DIRT with DOUG - AVOIDING TRANSPLANT SHOCK


With May being so wet and cool, many landscapers and gardeners are using this month to catch up with their planting projects.  So far in June our weather and timely rainfall has created a very good planting month.
                Many customers ask the question as to whether it is too late to plant.  Normally, I would answer this question by saying “No, it is not too late.  However, it takes more maintenance to be successful with planting this late in the season”.
                So, planting in June and avoiding transplant shock can be mitigated with a few straightforward practices.  Transplant shock presents itself in different ways.  With many plants, a common symptom is the drooping or browning of leaves.  The plant may appear to be in constant need of water even though the soil is saturated.
                Planting or transplanting (moving a plant to a new location) is disruptive to a plant’s growing cycle, as it must adjust to new soil, light, and wind conditions as well as different moisture and nutrient levels.  When we pull a plant out of a pot or out of the ground, we often disrupt this relationship.  Sometimes the thin, fibrous roots responsible for the uptake of water and nutrients are damaged or left behind.  One good practice to overcome transplant shock is to be sure that the plant is thoroughly watered prior to it being disrupted.  And, secondly, water the plant thorough at the time of planting.  I suggest adding ESPOMA BIO-TONE down in the hole to help with quicker root development.
                Here are a few other quick tips to be successful in planting or transplanting this time of year:
  1. Be sure to well the plants prior to transplanting or planting. You want the root system to be full of water.
  2.   Try to do the planting or transplanting early in the morning and not during the heat of the day.
  3. Be ready to plant as quickly as possible.  Sitting up out of ground for any length of time could cause the important fibrous roots to dry.
  4. Use a plant starter fertilizer to water the plants initially.
  5. New plants do not have extensive root system so be sure to water thoroughly and consistently during the first year.
HAPPY JUNE                                         HAPPY GARDENING                                     HAPPY PLANTING
Posted: 6/15/2016 by Doug Hensel | with 3 comment(s)
Mary and Alice, Thank you for sending in your comments. Only time will tell on the tree. It certainly seems to be in transplant shock. Keep it watered, but not drowning and let's hope it turns around and starts to put out new, green leaves. There is a product called PLANT STARTER that is a liguid feed at the time of transplanting.
6/27/2016 12:58:27 PM

I have the same question as Allie. Meadows Farms installers transplanted our tree last week, but left it out of the ground for four hours before putting it back. It now looks dead. Can we save it?
6/16/2016 7:36:35 PM

Great tips! Do you have any tips to help plants bounce back once the "shock" characteristics (drooping, browning leaves) are observed?
6/16/2016 12:59:58 PM

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