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Is Late Fall Too Late for Planting Trees?

Most people associate the fall with the end of planting, growing, and caring for crops. Fall is the time of harvest. When it comes to planting trees, however, fall is a great time to get started. The cooler fall weather gives the roots time to grow before the harsh summer heat returns.

Cool, wet weather is the perfect condition to plant trees. In these conditions, newly planted trees won’t need to be watered as often. The cooler weather leads to less top growth. Less sunlight also means a decrease in photosynthesis. The air temperatures are fairly stable in the fall. The temperature of the soil stays warm even as the air temperature drops. All of these factors lead to stunted top growth, but this is exactly what you want at the early stages of tree growth.

When the top growth stalls, the roots take over. Strong, established roots are the key to successful tree planting. In Wichita and the Sedgwick County area, the ideal time for planting trees is between September and November. Trees planted within this time frame will be well equipped to handle high temperatures and dry periods during the summer months.

When Not to Plant Trees

At Complete Tree Services, we want your planting to be successful. Now that we’ve established that it’s okay to plant trees in the fall, let’s talk about when not to plant trees. While it’s good to plant in the fall, it’s best to avoid planting too late in the season. A good rule of thumb is to cease planting after trees in the area begin losing their leaves. Trees should be planted at least six to eight weeks before the first heavy frost. Anything later than this can be harmful to the tree’s growth.

It’s also a good idea to avoid planting in the summer. Early spring is a great time to plant, but avoid periods of heavy rain. Heavy and frequent rain makes the soil too unstable for successful planting. A useful tip is to measure the soil temperature for a few days. It should be above 50 degrees Fahrenheit for most deciduous trees and above 60 degrees Fahrenheit for evergreen trees.

Let Us Handle Your Tree-Care Needs

To sum things up, the fall is a great time for tree planting, but don’t wait too long. If it’s too close to winter, it may be best to just wait until early spring. For more information on this topic, please feel free to reach out to us. If you live in Wichita or the surrounding area, we would love to help you out with all of your tree-care needs. For everything from trimming and pruning to tree removal, Complete Tree Services has you covered.

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