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Newly Planted Shrubs Are Thirsty

(credit: Phran Novelli)

(credit: Phran Novelli)

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By Phran Novelli

PHILADELPHIA (CBS) - Even with all the rain we had in June, if you planted trees and shrubs this spring, don’t think you won’t have to water anymore this summer. You’ll still have to monitor new plantings, because until the root system is well established – by growing a deep, complex network that can drink in all the water available in the soil – new shrubs and trees are sort of sitting in a pot, that is, the hole you dug to plant them.

Summer heat is very stressful to new plants and with their roots still near the surface, when the soil gets dry, those roots can fry. So, check the soil regularly and make sure newly-planted trees and shrubs get about an inch of water per week from you or the rain.

Don’t water plants a teensy bit every day, that trains plant roots that they don’t need to grow down to get water! Instead, put a trickling hose on the ground and let it sink in slowly for a couple of hours. That kind of deep, regular watering encourages plants to grow the vital deeper roots they need – and the sooner they do, the easier life will be for them and for you.