The best season for transplanting depends on the type of material being planted. Usually, the prime objective is to transplant at a time that will permit good root growth before shoots and leaves develop. For most plants in most parts of the country, that time is early autumn. Then the roots can grow as long as the soil remains unfrozen and the cool air temperatures encourage the above-ground parts to go dormant. Early spring, when root growth exceeds shoot growth, is the second best sea­son. Summer is not a good season unless containerized material is used with its intact root system. Winter is not a good season for transplanting in northern regions because the roots cannot grow. In regions where the winter temperatures are milder and the ground does not freeze, winter can be a satisfactory alternate season for transplanting.

Grass shears

Used to trim grass along walks, roadways, the edge of planting beds, and around trees, posts, etc.

Pruning shears

Used to trim tree and shrub twigs up to 1/2 inch in diameter.


Lopping shears

Used to trim tree and shrub twigs from 1 inch to 1 1/2 inches in diameter.

Hedge shears

Prunes shrubs grown closely spaced as hedges. These shears are only used on young, tender new growth.

FIGURE Ю-1. Tools for landscape installation (Ddmar/Cengage Learning)

Single-bit and double-bit axes

Obvious chopping uses. Especially useful in tree removal and for cutting up fallen timber.

Lawn comb

An excellent rake for collection of leaves and coarse debris from lawn surface.

Weed cutter

Removes annual weeds by cutting them off at ground level. Not very effective against biennial and perennial weeds.

Shrub comb

Used for raking debris from small areas between shrubs.

Toothed rakes

Used for heavy-duty raking that requires a strong tool. Commonly used in preparation of lawn seed beds and cultivation of planted beds.

Bulb planter

Used to install flowering bulbs.

Broom rake

Very useful in places where a lightweight, springy rake is needed. Very good for collecting debris and clippings from lawn surface.

Push hoe

Similar to a scuffle hoe. It is good for rooting out weeds.

FIGURE 10-1. (Continued)

chapter 10 Installing Landscape Plants ♦ 275

FIGURE 10-1. (Continued)

Comparatively inexpensive Lightweight and easy to transport Dormant at the time of planting

• Larger material can be transplanted

• Less damage to the root system

• Can be transplanted throughout spring and fall

Severely reduced root system Transplant season limited to early spring

Usually small, requiring time to mature

• Usually the most expensive

• Soil ball adds weight and bulk

• For large plants, costly installation equipment is required

•Less expensive than b & b material

• Root system intact

•Can be transplanted throughout spring, summer, and fall

• Seldom available in large sizes

• Can become root – bound if kept in containers too long

figure 10-3. Root forms of landscape plants (Delmar/Cengage Learning)

Flowering bulbs have definite transplant seasons. Hardy bulbs, which bloom in the spring, must be planted in the fall. Tender bulbs, which flower in the summer and will not survive the winter, are planted in the spring, dug up in the fall, and stored indoors over winter.

Annual flowers, purchased as bedding plants, are transplanted in the spring after all danger of frost is past.

Updated: October 1, 2015 — 4:58 pm