Planting a tree. Soil doesnot soak water.

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Old 09-19-12, 01:15 PM
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Planting a tree. Soil doesnot soak water.

Hi,
I am ready to plant a fruit tree in my backyard. I dug a hole and I read somewhere that I should fill the hole with water and let the soil soak it. If water is not soaked within 4 hours, there is a problem. It has been many hours and water is still left at the bottom of the hole.

What do I do? Is it a big problem?

regards
 
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Old 09-19-12, 01:23 PM
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You apparently have clay soil - sound about right?
 
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Old 09-19-12, 01:47 PM
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Probably it is clay. It was hard to dig. What do I do to work around?
 
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Old 09-19-12, 02:16 PM
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It depends on what your soil type is. I have similar problems on my property with saprolite soil which is probably the worst scenario. Most clays will hold water but many plants happily grow through it. The red clay in our area holds water beautifully, turns to grease when wet but grass and shrubbery love it.

I can dig a hole in my saprolite and add water and it never soaks in. Trees & shrubs can get root rot from being constantly wet. If the plant survives it becomes root bound in the hole, only growing in the loose amended soil. I mound plants so the soil around the roots can drain. I also dig and amend extremely large holes knowing that the plant will have to spend it's life in the area I prepare so holes are dug for the mature size of the plant, not the young little one I'm planting.
 
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Old 09-19-12, 02:46 PM
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Thanks Pilot.
I have dug a big hole about 3 times the diameter of the pot in which the plant is. I can dig it even wider. I have a bag of gardens soil with compost and I will mix it with the soil I dug out. It is a Guava tree and I read it survives Clay soils well.
Is it a good idea to put some gravel at the bottom of the pit?
 
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Old 09-19-12, 02:51 PM
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I would not bother with gravel. It will not help drainage like it does in a pot.
 
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Old 09-19-12, 06:52 PM
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Thanks again..................
 
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Old 09-24-12, 12:19 PM
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Thanks for all your help...
I dug a big hole 3-4 times the dia of the root ball. While planting I mixed the regular soil with Garden soil and compost in almost 50-50 ratio and planted the tree. It appears to be a happy tree!
 
 

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