Planting New Trees with Watering Bags Not as Beneficial as Root Aeration Tubes

Tree watering bag

Tree watering bag

When a tree is removed from the farm, its roots are bound in either a container or a burlap “ball.” This process removes as much as 95% of the root structure and forces the tree to live in a state of shock until it is finally placed in its new home. While waiting for its new home, it must be watered and fed in much the same way that a comatose patient in critical care is fed.

How Does a Tree Develop Before Its Planting?

Water is delivered to the tree via slow-drip, low-pressure tubing that is carefully circulated throughout the garden center. The longer that a tree lives in this state, the more fibrous roots it will grow in close proximity to its trunk. Because of constrained space, these roots will tangle and encircle the trunk. If the root ball is not pruned at the time of transplanting, encircled roots can lead to the death of the tree.

How Should Tree Roots Grow Once Planted?

When a tree is transplanted, the way that it absorbs water and nutrients should change from how it was at the garden center to a more natural way. Instead applying water in the small space surrounding the trunk, the tree should have the opportunity to absorb water and nutrients from soil that is far from the trunk. This will encourage fibrous root growth in directions away from the trunk, thus an increasing root structure is gained.

Tree Watering Bags Prohibit Natural Root Growth

Tree watering bags compaction results

Tree watering bags compaction results

Problems start when a tree is sent to its destination from the garden center with a watering bag that is designed to put water only at the trunk. The bag encircles the trunk of the tree after it is transplanted and slowly drips water onto the top of the root ball. You are now planting a tree that is less likely to survive. Why? Because although the tree is getting water, it is getting it just as it did in the garden center. Remember the problem of encircling fibrous roots?

Planting Trees with Root Aeration Tubes Promotes Healthy Root Growth

Imagine if patients continued to be fed intravenously even after they’re home from the hospital. Although the IV was helpful in the hospital, it is not usually the best way to nourish a patient outside of the hospital. Eventually we have to get back to a more natural form of nourishment if we want to remain healthy. Deliver water AND gas exchange to promote deep root growth and maximize tree health when planting new trees by using root aeration tubes.

It is best to leave the watering bag at the garden center, untangle and/or prune the tangled roots, and provide your new tree with opportunities to spread its roots.

If you want to plant healthy trees after they leave the garden center, Rootwell’s root aeration tubes are the answer. Call us today to learn more.