Japanese and red maple

Asked April 5, 2017, 2:18 PM EDT

I ordered 3 Japanese Maples and one Red Maple. I live in Redmond. I have read that I should not amend the soil when planting; they will arrive bareroot. I am concernd that my soil may not be adequate for a healthy tree? Any suggestions re soil, placement or further reading? First time planter. Thank you.

Deschutes County Oregon

1 Response

Though many sources recommend that you don't amend your soil when planting trees, we do recommend this in the Central Oregon area. Our soils are poor at holding water and nutrients so we feel it is an important step to establishing new trees. We recommend that you mix one-third soil amendment to two-thirds native soil. Making a wide planting hole, perhaps 2 feet wide for a bareroot tree, is probably wide enough.

Japanese maples are not really adapted to our area. They like organic, acidic soils with moderate moisture. Afternoon sun and winter winds are very hard on these trees in Central Oregon. That said, I have seen a few nice specimens. They have been placed in just the right location so they can do well.

Your red maple should do just fine. Follow the above advice for planting.

Your transplanted trees will need to be kept moist, even through the winter, to give them the best chance of doing well. Compost or bark mulch over the rooting area will help keep the soil cool in our hot summers.

Good luck with your new trees. If you have any more questions feel free to stop by the office and talk to our Master Gardeners. We are located on the Deschutes County fairgrounds just off parking lot D.