The Q&A Archives: When is best to plant Timeless Beauty Desert Willow

Question: When is best to plant your TIMELESS BEAUTY DESERT WILLOW Chilopsis linearis 'Monhews'?

I remember planting a Desert Willow I got from the Living Desert in Palm Desert when I lived in Cathedral City, CA 92234.

NOW, I live in the Kern River Valley, at 2,850' elevation. USDA zone 9a (I'm told).

Answer: You are, indeed, in USDA zone 9A. As with all trees and shrubs, the absolutely best time to plant them are either spring or fall, when temperatures are cool and rainfall abundant. Dig a hole slightly deeper and wider than the nursery pot your tree is growing in. Unpot it and loosen the roots with your fingers, then set it in the hole and backfill with native soil. Water deeply after it's planted, to help settle the soil. Be sure to water deeply once each week until rains take over for you.

If you plant in the fall, the root system will become established over the winter months; if you plant in spring, the roots will become established over the summer months. Either way, be sure to water weekly during the first season.

Best wishes with your garden!

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