Okame Cherry tree not taking root

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Deano80
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Okame Cherry tree not taking root

Post by Deano80 » April 29th, 2019, 9:57 am

We purchased an Okame Cherry tree a 1.5 years ago and planted it in our front yard. The local nursery we purchased from suggested we use a mushroom compost, soil enhancer (which they sold us), and to dig a shallow but wide oval hole for it. We are located in South Carolina and have compact red clay. They suggested we mix the mushroom compost with the soil enhancer which consists of pine bark, soil, compost, and other stuff and bag fill with it.

The tree is currently about 10 ft tall but not too much of a spread. The leaves are doing great and it has beautiful blooms every year but the issue we're having is it won't take root outside of the hole and soil mixture we used. Strong winds push the tree over and after 1.5 years you can still rock the tree and the ground around it shifts back and forth.

I was speaking with a neighbor who suggested that we should have used 50% native soil which in our case is red clay with the stuff we bought from the nursery. At this point I don't know if we should dig up the whole tree and start over or what? Some of the roots have reached the clay but not enough to anchor it down. The other day I noticed it leaning over and when I pulled back some mulch there were pockets around the root system where apparently everything had settled or decomposed.

jimmo
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Re: Okame Cherry tree not taking root

Post by jimmo » May 17th, 2019, 9:36 pm

I'd agree that you should use no less than 50/50 existing soil to amended, but at this point I wouldn't start over. Just stake it good so it doesn't blow around until the roots spread. Also really tamp down the soil around tree to help anchor it and remove air pockets.

jimmo
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Re: Okame Cherry tree not taking root

Post by jimmo » May 17th, 2019, 9:38 pm

Also my cherry was slow to root as well. Took about a year before it seemed properly anchored.

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