Wednesday, November 2, 2011

New Trees for the Backyard

Our new trees arrived last week. Both trees are bur oaks. The bur oak can grow to about 100 feet in height with a trunk diameter reaching 3 feet. It is slow growing, but very drought tolerant due to its massive taproot. It can live up to 400 years.

Please note the correct spelling is "bur", not "burr". Bur oaks are often called white oaks as well.

Picture of a mature bur oak; this is NOT one of our trees

I planted our new trees in the back half of our backyard. In the summer, they will block the early morning sun as it peeps over our back fence.

Our new bur oak trees

One of the bur oaks we received was not as healthy looking as the other. I really don't remember it looking that way at the nursery. However, I enjoy a good challenge, so I'm ready to see if I can revive it and produce a beautiful tree.

Our healthy bur oak.

The white items at the base of the trees are gallon milk jugs. I like to take milk jugs, punch small holes in them, then "plant" them with trees, large shrubs, and other plants of size. I then put fertilizer in the jugs and fill them with water. The water mixes with the fertilizer and slowly leeches out near the roots of the plants, thereby delivering water exactly where it does the most good. This is also a water saving method as water is not wasted on top soil; it also is not subject to evaporation.

I'm now spending my time preparing a bed along the northeast fence. So far, I've dug out 4 feet from the fence and I'm cleaning out the grass and the rock. Next, I'll start working in compost, then build a border. I hope to have this 4 ft. by 50 ft. bed ready by late January or early February for planting onions and other cool weather vegetables (tender greens, beets, radishes, etc.).

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