Oxford Insta-Shade's Basic Planting Guideline

  1. Hole: Dig a hole about 1/3 wider and deeper than the pot/root ball. In clay soil the hole should be shallower than normal to avoid drowning the plant.
  2. Filling: Bone meal is recommended to help establish the roots and give the plants a boost of phosphorus. Triple mix (compost, topsoil, peat moss) and/or peat moss are also very good amendments.
  3. Water: Before you place the plant into the hole, give both the plant and the hole a long drink of water.
  4. Plant: Plastic pot ? remove the plant from the container, rough up the roots, and put it into the hole (green side up, roots down). Fiber pot ? keep the plant in the decomposable pot. Cut off the top 2” of the pot and make 5-7 long vertical cuts on the sides to allow the roots to grow into their new home.
  5. Remove: Take off/cut away any wires and rope around the base of the plant. For trees in wire baskets, cut away at least 1/3 of the wire and burlap at the top of the root ball after it is placed in the hole.
  6. Final Filling: Put the remainder of your triple mix or top soil around the plant. Please make sure to never cover up the crown (where the stem divides into roots) with soil and mulch because that will suffocate the plant.
  7. Staking: Depending on the type, size, and location of the tree you are planting, staking may be recommended. For an average potted tree with a 2” and under diameter trunk, insert a T-post 6” away from the trunk towards the prevailing winds. Secure the post to the tree with rubber hose or other recommended products in store.
  8. Mulch: Add about 2”-3” of mulch to control weeds, keep the soil moist, and make your garden look complete! Options available; bark nuggets, cocoa shell mulch, hemlock mulch, natural cedar mulch and a variety of dyed mulches.
  9. Fertilize: Rich soil is a great way to start off a new plant, but fertilizers will give plants a beneficial boost throughout the growing season. Look for N-P-K percentages on the fertilizer bags/containers to find out which product is best for your plant. N - Nitrogen encourages stem & foliage growth, as well as a healthy dark green color. P - Phosphorus helps roots develop and increases flower & seed production. K - Potassium reduces plant stress & strengthens the plant’s immune system. Check with staff regarding which type of fertilizer (slow release or water soluble) is best for your plant!
  10. Future Watering Instructions: If you’re thirsty, your plant probably is too! Water generously 2-3 times a week until frost for the first year or as directed otherwise by an employee. Keep in mind that plants in clay soil will need less water, while plants in sandy soil will need water more often. Irrigation systems, soaker hoses, water quenchers, and water donuts are available in our store. Please ask a sales employee for further details on watering, as all plant species and sizes differ in watering requirements.


* Please remember that this is a basic planting guideline only. If you have any further questions, feel free to consult any member of staff at Oxford Insta-Shade. Happy planting!

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