Plant a Burlapped Yew Tree

See how James Douglass and Russell Rigler plant up their Yew Tree (Taxus baccata).
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1. Choose Your Location

Before you do anything you need to make sure you have chosen a good location where the tree will have plenty of space to grow without invading or being invaded by other plants.

2. Choose Your Yew Tree

Try to choose the healthiest looking tree that you can find. Avoid anything with gouges or large wounds. When buying burlapped trees you will usually find the root ball to be covered in a wire cage to help with carrying and transporting the tree safely without damage.

3. Remove Mulch

If the area you have chosen to plant at has any mulch on the ground it is best to clear with to the side, separate from any top soil that can be used later on. This goes the same when you need to remove grass.

4. Remove Topsoil

Remove the top soil next into another separate pile, so that you can use this later on. Try removing about double the width of the root ball, for example James has removed approximately 1 metre in diameter.

5. Remove subsoil

Next fork over and shovel out the subsoil, this is what you will be using when refilling the hole back in.

6. Fork Over Tougher Soil

Once you start to reach more clay soil, you will find it easier to start forking over and shovelling out. When you think the hole is deep enough fork over the bottom layer and sides to losen it up, making it easier for the roots to grow into.

7. Check Site and Sizing

Take your yew tree and test it to make sure that the hole is deep enough and wide enough to fit happily.

8. Remove Wire Cage and Burlap

Remove the wire caging and as much of the burlap sack as you can, before placing in its position.

9. Add Mycorrhizal Fungi

When first planting up it is always a good idea to give your plants some extra feed to help it with nutrients and keep it happy for its first year. James has used Mycorrhizal fungi which helps the plant to take up more water and nutrients. This is due to the fungi and plant creating a symbiotic relationship between them where the plant provides the fungus with carbohydrates through photosynthesis and the fungi colonise the root system providing the increase in water and nutrients absorption. Sprinkle the Mycorrhizal fungi around the edges of the root ball.

10. Final Positioning

Make sure that you are happy with the position of your yew tree and that it is standing straight.

11. Refill The Hole With Your Soil

Use the subsoil to refill the hole back in making sure that you consolidate the ground around the root ball to ensure that no air holes are left. Add the topsoil back and rake it over to remove any large lumps before re-mulching.

12. Water Well!

Give your plant a good soaking and you are complete!

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