The Q&A Archives: Planting a Bloodgood tree

Question: My Bloodgood tree came with burlap around the roots. I got it at a Home Depot store. It is planted in a regular black plastic container. My question is what to do about the burlap. Do I take it off when I plant the tree or what?

Answer: If you can manage it, take off the burlap prior to planting. Rumor has it that the burlap will decompose over time, but I've found that the roots will grow around and around rather than reaching out and exploring the native soil. You want the roots to spread out to anchor the tree in the ground. So, remove the burlap. To plant properly, dig a hole just as deep and a little wider than the container; rough the soil up on the sides of the hole and set a small mound of soil in the bottom of the hole. Remove the burlap and loosen the roots a little, then set the rootmass on the mound of soil in the bottom of the hole so they drape naturally over it. Backfill with the soil you removed from the hole, gently tapping it down. Water well after planting and be sure to water deeply once each week to help your new maple tree establish its root system.

Best wishes with your new tree!

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