Landscape plants are available in a variety of root forms. Bedding plants and groundcovers are usually grown in pressed peat pots or plastic packets that permit the root system to be transplanted intact. Trees and shrubs can be purchased as bare-rooted, balled-and-burlapped (b & b), or containerized plants. The advantages and disadvantages of each are compared in Figure 10-3.
Which root form is best to use depends on the season of the year, the availability of stock, the size of the plants at the time of installation, and the budget of the project. Bare root is a common root form for deciduous shrubs and a few trees that develop new roots quickly after transplanting. Evergreens are most often balled-and-burlapped or containerized. Deciduous trees and shrubs may also be obtained in b & b or containerized forms. Large b & b plants may have the soil ball reinforced with a wire basket to prevent breakage during handling. Vines are usually containerized.