Any way to safely move saplings?

FortyTwo

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Many of the trees in my yard have saplings of a different type growing under them. I don't want them to interfere with the trees that are already there, but I also don't want my mother to go around and snap them or pull them out and toss them aside. Is there any way to dig them up safely and replant them elsewhere?

Forgive me if the answer to this should be obvious - I'm a bit of a noob at plants. :p
 

Forster

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Do not attempt to remove saplings if one wants to replant them until they are dormant (the leaves have fallen off). The best time to dig up and transplant is in the spring before they have leafed out. Dig a trench around the saplings wrap the outside with burlap (secure the burlap with small nails), then dig under the tree and eventually cut the tap root. Then ease another piece of burlap under the root ball and tie the whole thing together with twine. Then it's ready to transplant. Be careful to not break up the root ball. When you transplant remove the twine but you can leave the burlap as it will disintegrate over time, however I would remove it if the root ball won't break up when you transplant it.

I used to work in a nursery during HS... long time ago. Nowadays most of the trees just come in on trucks in pots.
 

Forster

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Here's an image of what a root ball wrapped in burlap looks like:

CIMG0088.jpg
 
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FortyTwo

FortyTwo

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Yikes! I doubt I can convince her to do that. :eek: Thanks for the advice, though! :D

ETA: Does it make a difference if they're really small? As in, only two feet or so high, and less than an inch thick at the trunk?
 

Forster

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Only in that you need a smaller root ball. If they are going to be cut down before they go dormant you can always try to do it while the saplings are leafed out and see if they survive... hard on them though.