trees - Knowledgebase Question

Batesville, Ar
Question by towngirl1
March 21, 2010
I have a volunteer magnolia growing in a bad location. How can I move it without killing it. The tree is approximately 2' tall right now.

Answer from NGA
March 21, 2010


Volunteer trees usually have a more extensive root system than the same tree grown in a container. Expect the roots to be deeper - probably 12-18" - and wider than the tips of the longest branches. It's okay to sever some of the outer roots but try to keep the main roots intact. I'd soak the soil the day before digging. I think moist soil is easier to dig. Start digging at the tips of the branches, digging down and toward the trunk of the tree. Dig slowly and carefully, trying not to damage the roots. Dig all around the tree, removing soil by hand if necessary, until you can trace the root system and get beneath the deepest roots. When you replant, make sure the tree will be at the same soil level as it was growing before and be sure to water it well after replanting. Good luck with the move.

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