How and when to plant conifers

Garden Life
You can plant out conifers in a plant container in the garden throughout the year, and conifers with a root bale from the end of August already. Early autumn planting is advantageous for these trees as they begin to produce roots immediately on warm autumn days. They thus establish themselves very early, get through the winter better and sprout both earlier and stronger in spring compared with conifers planted in spring.
Conifers which are frost-proof to a certain extent, such as Blue Atlas Cedar (Cedrus atlantica ‘glauca’), Himalaya Cedar (Cedrus deodara), Umbrella Pine (Sciadopitis verticillata) or Siberian Cypress (Microbiota decussata) should rather be planted in early spring.

Secure conifers standing alone in exposed areas, for example freshly planted pines (except dwarf pines) with a tree stake, so that the freshly sprouted roots do not tear off when the gusty autumn wind tugs at the plant. Especially in the initial growth phase, ensure that the newly planted plants do not dry out. It is helpful to add 20 litres of water per square metre at the right time. However, it is also helpful to surround the conifers in the initial growth phase with a straw mat as wind protection.

Planting a conifer hedge, for example Thuja:

Draw a plant line at the required hedge position (where necessary observe the distance of the hedge to the neighbour!). Distribute the hedge plants along the line, according to the required distance between the plants. Dig the first plant hole and shovel the excavated earth into a wheelbarrow. Then place the plant in the plant hole and fill it with the excavated earth of the next plant hole – and so on. The last plant hole is filled with the soil from the first excavation (from the wheelbarrow).

With all planting work for conifers, never plant them in compacted soil. Always remove soil compaction beforehand by loosening the earth deeply around the planting area so that the conifers can easily grow roots.

Tip: Conifers provide structure in the garden and therefore approximately a third of garden plants should be conifers. They are especially important in the winter months for perception of space in the garden when most deciduous trees are bare. Around this time, they also offer garden birds vital protection from precipitation and icy winds.