Tree Planting & Care

If tree planting is a project requirement of the City of Arlington Land Use Code, planting details are outlined in the City of Arlington Public Works Construction Standards.

All trees have the same basic needs to grow and be healthy. Basic requirements include water, carbon dioxide, oxygen, nutrients, sunlight, appropriate temperature, and sufficient space. Air supplies carbon dioxide and oxygen, soil is the reservoir for nutrients and moisture, and sunlight provides heat and light.

Photosynthesis, the manufacture of sugar by the green parts of the tree in the presence of sunlight, must be able to supply the energy needs of the tree. The strength which a tree grows, known as vigor, must remain high enough to survive disease causing bacteria, fungi, and insects.

  1. Handling Before Planting
  2. Preparing the Planting Hole
  3. Preparing & Setting the Tree
  4. Fertilization
  5. Water
  6. Other Tips
  • Trees should be carefully inspected at the nursery or upon delivery to determine that they meet specifications for the species, and have good root quality, top confirmation, and health.
  • They may need to be acclimatized to their new site, a process called hardening off. Both roots and tops must be kept moist and protected from temperature extremes.
  • Bare root deciduous trees should be planted soon after being received. They can be held for a few weeks, if kept cool, so neither roots nor buds become active.
  • Balled or burlapped (B&B) and container grown trees can be planted almost any time, although it is wise to plant B&B plants soon after they are dug.
  • Root balls and containers should be protected from the sun that roots are not injured.