newly planted pear tree is wilting badly

Asked September 15, 2018, 7:06 PM EDT

I recently had a young pear tree planted on September 6 by the city of Denver. I was instructed to water 2 gallons every day for the first 2 weeks, then 3 gallons every other day for the first 2 months.

Attached is a picture that shows wilting and many yellow leaves today only 9 days after planting. Beneath the mulch, there are a few thin roots not fully covered with soil. FYI

What would you recommend? Water? frequency? Cover the roots with soil? Thank you!

Denver County Colorado

2 Responses

Yes, cover the exposed roots with soil. It does not have to be deep, but they do need to be covered. The watering recommendation you received should be adequate. Check the soil both in the root ball and the backfill soil. It should be moist, but not waterlogged. We have had very hot weather for September (90+ for over a week), which will stress a new tree because it does not have a developed root system. Hopefully, with the arrival of cooler seasonal temperatures, your tree will be less stressed and able to work on developing some roots to support the canopy. Also, the tree will need winter watering until it is established (rule of thumb - a year for every inch of trunk diameter).

I am attaching a link to a CSU fact sheet on new tree care and winter watering:

You guys rock! Thanks so much!