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  1. #1

    Join Date
    Dec 2001
    Posts
    59
    Location
    Illinois
    Tractor
    JD 755

    Default Using backhoe to transplant bushes

    I want to transplant some large bushes that are about 10-12' wide and tall. This is a quick and dirty job, using a construction size backhoe. The bushes are nasty Russian Olive, which are like a weed in this township. I want to pull some out that are in the way, but I want to see if I can stick them back in along a road boundary for privacy. If they die, it's no big deal, as long as I didn't have to do a lot of handwork in the process. I have already pulled and disposed of several. The backhoe is big enough that it can just scoop them out in one move. What should I do to give them a chance to survive? I know I should have the new hole ready. Should I cut the bush down to size first? Should I dig around the base and cut roots before yanking them out? The more work I have to do, the less enthused I am about the project. But, I want to give them a chance to live. Any suggestions?

  2. #2

    Join Date
    Jun 2001
    Posts
    1,390
    Location
    South Central Oklahoma
    Tractor
    Kubota Grand L4610HSTC

    Default Re: Using backhoe to transplant bushes

    RocketJSquirrel, Well, given your requiremens for reduced hand work, make a hole, dig 'em up, drop 'em in.

    To increase the odds of survival, give them a good dose of vitamin B solution from your local nursery supply to suppress "root shock."

    If you want that privacy while you are still young enough to enjoy it (read, to stimulate growth) get some tree/shrub fertilizer pellets (mine are about an inch thick and an inch and a half in diameter). Take a hoe handle or something and make a hole down into the root mass, drop in a "tablet" and ram it home with the thing used to make the hole. Do not use regular tree spikes (big chunks of fertilizer with a pointed end to eae insertion as they are to "hot" for a transplant, to my way of thinking.

    If you dig a slightly larger hole than the size of the chunk of tree containing dirt, you will end up with a slight depression that will aid in watering without having to do manual labor of making a watering ring of dirt around the transplanted tree.

    Next step up in the continuum of hand work is to lightly prune it back to reduce the foilage area commensurate to the root loss. Even if you get most of the roots it is likely that the forces involved will have broken off a lot of the root hairs and reduced the roots funtionality until regrowth takes place.

    Best of luck to you and plese report back on your results.

    Patrick

  3. #3
    Veteran Member Carl_NH's Avatar
    Join Date
    Apr 2002
    Posts
    1,943
    Location
    Coastal NH
    Tractor
    01 Kubota B21TLB, 2010 Ferris 52" ZTR, Cub Cadet 1811, Gravely Super8

    Default Re: Using backhoe to transplant bushes

    Don,

    Seems like I do this every weekend.. The most important part is the new hole prep. dug 2 x from what your moving in.

    Add composted cow manure, compost, and or organic material to allow the roots to start again. Then water like heck for the first month or so to get the roots re established in the ground.

    Depending on the plant and root system, you can also pull then out with a nice root ball attached then just put em in the new hole.

    The right soil and frequent water makes the most difference.

    Carl

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