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Don’t let the end of summer fool you... There’s still plenty that can be done outdoors.

If you read our last blog, you know that fall is often linked to its annual clean-ups. But there’s a lot more to be done outdoors during this season than just raking leaves. It’s also known as one of the best times to plant trees and shrubs as its cooler temperatures allow trees and shrubs to establish strong roots before the dog days of summer roll in.

Today’s blog will highlight the benefits of cultivating trees and shrubs in the fall, how to plant them like a pro, and some of the best types to grow in the Niagara Region.

Benefits of fall planting

When adding trees and shrubs to your landscape, planting in the fall offers several benefits.

Cool temperature

Fall’s cooler temperatures and shorter days create an environment that’s conducive to strong root systems. The sweltering heat of the summer, on the other hand, causes a tree’s stress levels to spike, making it more difficult for it to establish itself in its new home.

Fewer pests and diseases

Leaf defoliating insects are more common during the spring and summer. Once the temperatures decrease, they begin to recede, limiting the amount of stress placed on newly planted trees and shrubs.

Root growth

Although the temperatures outside may be cool, the fall soil is still warm from the previous summer months. This creates an ideal environment for new root growth.

In addition, the cool temperatures and shorter days, prompt trees to send resources to their roots to prepare for winter, which furthers root development.

The tree’s roots will continue growing until the ground freezes, resulting in a stronger, more developed root structure ready for spring.

Tips for planting in the fall

Be mindful of where you plant

When finding the perfect spot for your new tree or shrub, don’t just blindly choose any spot in your yard. Instead, consider the sun, shade, and moisture the new tree will receive in its chosen planting site.

You’ll also want to ensure your trees and shrubs have ample space to grow. Research the plant’s full-grown size and use a tape measure to gauge just how much space it will need. Avoid planting too close to your home or your neighbour’s property as it could cause damage to nearby buildings

After Care

Once your tree or shrub is planted, add a two-inch ring of mulch around the base. Next, grab your trusted hose or watering can and moisten the soil housing the recently planted tree or shrub

After this initial watering, how often you hydrate your plant will depend on its size, species, climate, and location. If you’re unsure, use a trowel to dig a 1-inch hole and feel the soil around the tree. If it’s moist to touch it doesn’t need water.

What type of tree or shrub should you plant?

At Tree Amigos, we are often asked, “What type of tree should I plant?” And while you may be tempted to choose one solely based on aesthetics, it’s much more complicated than that. Soil type, exposure to the sun, and maintenance requirements are just a few of the variables that must be considered when choosing which type of tree is best for your backyard.

To get you started, here are some tree types that are popular in the Niagara Region:

Weeping Mulberry

Known for its weeping branches, this deciduous tree is quite popular across the region. The weeping mulberry tolerates almost any type of soil as long as it’s well drained. When it comes to sun, it does best in full sun to partial shade.

If you’re looking for a tree that adds beauty to your yard without demanding too much of your time, the weeping mulberry is worth considering.

Shadblow Serviceberry

Next, we have the shadblow serviceberry, an ideal choice for small landscapes. The deciduous shrub exemplifies beautiful red and orange hues in the fall, white flowers in the spring, and edible berries in the month of June.

The shadblow serviceberry does best in full sun to partial shade and is fairly easy to maintain.  

Flowering Dogwood

Last but not least, is the Flowering Dogwood. This small tree is famous for its large yet delicate white flowers that bloom in the spring and turn brick red in the fall. Unlike the other two trees and shrubs listed above, this species is a bit more on the fussy side. It requires rich, well-drained acidic soil, adequate precipitation, and full sun to partial shade.

Improve your space this fall with Tree Amigos

Fall clean-ups don’t have to symbolize the end of your property’s beauty. In fact, fall offers the perfect opportunity to seize the unique characteristics of your landscape while making any necessary improvements before spring. And we can help! Our experienced landscape team can help you turn your backyard ideas into your perfect landscape–no matter the season!

Tree Amigos is a full-service landscaping company based in the Niagara Region. Our team is dedicated to helping you with all your autumnal landscaping needs–from planting trees and shrubs to pruning and mulching.

Contact us today to find out more about how we can brighten up your backyard this fall.