Click below to listen to my Garden Bite radio show: Transporting your purchases
Most dogs love the wind in their fur, motorcyclists like the wind in their hair, bugs in their teeth. I see lots of people driving down the road with new trees and shrubs hanging out of their trunks, trailers and truck beds. Branches bent beyond normal as they’re whisked away in highway winds. Leaves being beaten to a pulp. There are so many reasons this is not good.
Let’s say the leaves actually survive the trip, that wind has just sucked out any moisture they may have had from the nursery and they’re now in a weakened state and will be even more stressed when they arrive in their new home.
My plant sale purchases above fit nicely in my old CRV but I also have plastic available to keep it at least somewhat clean! Any larger shrubs, I’ll lay down. If I can’t fit them in my vehicle, I’ll make sure they’re wrapped for transport.
Tips to live by:
First, always buy healthy plants to begin with. Look it over carefully. Check for yellowed or spotted leaves, dead branches and overall health.
Smaller purchases may take longer to grow to the size you want but they will adjust to their new home much quicker, have a better chance of survival and are usually cheaper.
You’ve selected the best of the best, now you need to wrap it. Some local nurseries are very good about wrapping twine around new trees. I would suggest going further. If you have some old sheets or tarp, bring them with you.
Wrap each purchase with a layer of sheet or the tarp, secure with twine and make sure the trunk of the tree or shrub isn’t going to rub on anything when you go over bumps. If you can’t plant right away, then store your new trees or shrubs in a shaded area and water enough to keep the roots and soil moist till you can get them planted.