Tree and Shrub Planting for Fall

When it comes to landscaping, spring reigns supreme. Yet, the season of renewal isn’t the only time of year that is ideal for planting new life in your yard and sprucing up your landscape. Fall conditions offer a great start for new trees and shrubs so less work and more beauty will be awaiting you when the winter thaws. This week, Highlands Landscape would like to offer a quick guide to tree and shrub planting for fall and hopefully encourage you to get your hands a little dirty before the first freeze.


Plant by Columbus Day weekend!

You may know the feeling; you walk out the door one late summer evening and can sense the change of season brewing. The time between the summer and fall seasons practically begs for you to get outdoors and as it turns out, trees and shrubs love it too. The weeks between mid-August and mid-October are best for tree and shrub planting for fall thanks to mild air temperatures and warm, moist soil conditions. To promote strong plantings and vigorous root growth be sure to break ground before Columbus Day. Your new tress and shrubs will need at least six weeks to establish before the ground freezes.

What to Plant?

Choose trees and shrubs that establish easily for successful fall planting. Generally, any moderately sized deciduous (plants that lose their leaves) trees and shrubs will do best when planted during the fall season. When searching for your new plantings choose healthy and container-grown or root ball plants. A few types of trees with a good reputation for establishing easily are maple, hackberry, elm, ash, and sycamore. Your local garden center can always point you in the right direction. Pine and spruce for windbreaks can do well too if planted during the month of September while the soil is still warm.

Tips for Successful Planting

Measure the depth of the root ball from trunk flare to end of roots and dig only to that depth. The trunk flare should meet or be 1 to 2 inches above the soil level. Planting too deeply may be detrimental to your planting. Measure the width of the root ball and be sure to dig your hole 2 to 3 times wider. Before setting you plant gently loosen any tightly wound roots. Mix some organic matter such as compost or peat moss to the native soil before backfilling to keep your trees and shrubs happy. Water halfway through backfilling as well as immediately after allowing the water to completely distribute after each watering.

Any excuse to get outdoors and beautify your landscape is a good excuse! Highlands Landscape is dedicated and passionate about bring beauty and function to every yard. If you would like some help planning a new look for your yard or would like some help maintaining a healthy outdoor space we would be honored to help!

If you’d like to schedule a free lawn and yard consultation we’re happy to provide you with one where we can walk through your property with you and talk about your lawn and yard needs.

As always, we are only a phone call away at (781) 431-2338, or you can reach us direct through our website.



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With over 10 years of landscaping excellence, our fully insured operation provides a state-of-the-art approach delivered by a top-notch professional staff.

Proudly serving Wellesley, Weston, NatickWayland, HollistonAshland and the surrounding Massachusetts communities.

(781) 431-2338

Highlands Landscape
Construction & Tree
136 Fisher St.
Holliston, MA 01746

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(781) 431-2338