Rudi’s top five tips for planting a tree on National Tree Day

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Rudi’s top five tips for planting a tree on National Tree Day
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Published 22 July 2022

National Tree Day is coming up on 31 July, so we asked our legendary bushcare coordinator, Rudi Adlmayer, for his top five tips for planting and looking after a healthy tree. Rudi would know: he’s planted thousands.

1. Select the right tree

The most important thing is to select the right tree. If you want to attract magpies and parrots, banksias are great. If you want shade, think about something else. Go for small seedlings in tubestock rather than bigger ones in pots, they’ll grow twice as fast.

You could ask for advice at a native nursery like Randwick Community Nursery or Sutherland Community Nursery, or try asking Google.

2. Select the right site

Site selection is key. What kind of soil do you have? Is it sandy or clay, or something else? How much wind and sun does the spot get?

Have a look around at the trees and plants that are growing nearby to see if your plant will suit the space.

3. Dig and plant

Dig a hole the width of the plant and a bit deeper than the pot. Planting a tiny bit below the surrounding ground is good because the water won’t run off. I always say a depressed plant is a happy plant.

Next, get the plant out of the pot. You’d be surprised how many people skip that step. It’s OK to cut or break the roots if they’re hanging on at the bottom.

If it’s dry you can add 100ml of water at the bottom of the hole, then just put it in, put the soil back and press down around the roots with your hands.

4. Mulch and water

Cover with mulch and follow up with weekly watering for the next four months. Unless you get good rain, in which case you can probably skip it. That’s about all the care a native tree needs: they’re a lot lower maintenance than having an ornamental garden or growing veggies.

5. Watch out for weeds and lawns

Watch out for weeds and lawns. They will overgrow your seedlings if you don’t clear them from the surrounding area. When we’re planting trees for Council we usually clear the area beforehand and cover it in mulch, which stops the weeds coming back.

That’s about it. Go forth and plant… then maintain!

Join us to plant a tree on National Tree Day

Sunday 31 July 2022, 9:30am-12:30pm

Christison Park, Vaucluse

Tree Day is an opportunity to do something positive for your local environment and community and to reconnect with nature. We will plant a range of locally native plants at this ocean foreshore site to beautify the park and extend the habitat corridor for small birds and other wildlife. Everyone is welcome!

All plants will be supplied by Woollahra Council along with gloves and tools. After your planting join us for a snack and let the kids take part in our interactive native wildlife program.

Register online

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