Gulley Greenhouse carries many of both common and uncommon varieties of trees and shrubs. Our trees and shrubs are hardy for our cold mountain zone and we produce many of the small fruit shrubs that we sell. Gulley Greenhouse carries ONLY potted trees and shrubs. We have found that a plant will last longer and thrive in the planted area if it has smaller tender roots. Our largest size container is a 15 Gal. (around 15 feet tall).
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It is very important to match plants with their particular sun requirements. One may grow well and flourish in certain areas of your yard, but if it does not get enough or gets too much sun it may burn, become floppy, or not bloom. Also remember that trees always keep growing and you must plant your garden according to your tree’s mature size.
When your planting site has been prepared begin planting on a cool day or in the evening so as not to shock the plant with the hot sun. Use Root Stimulator to help plants become more quickly established.
If a plant’s roots are tightly massed in its pot, slowly pull them apart and spread them out in the soil.
When planting you want to use ½ new soil/amendments to ½ old soil or a measurement depending on how nutrient-rich your old soil is.
After planting, water each plant thoroughly. 6pm to 9am is the best time period, but if you don’t have a timed sprinkler system, water during a cool day. Water in the evening or early morning so moisture will not evaporate out of the ground, but don’t let moisture remain on the leaves or powdery mildew could develop.
Always water deeply, slowly, and for long periods of time, do not sprinkle your plants. It may look like moisture is getting into the ground but many times it’s just running off in rivulets. When using a hose, keep it on low so your plants aren’t harmed. Water at least 15 to 20 minutes if not for a half hour. This will save plants from the stress of dehydration.
Give your soil the attention it needs before buying trees or shrubs.
Test out your pH levels, till in organic matter, and watch for material that may inhibit plant growth.
Create workable soil so water, air, and nutrients can filter down easily and roots have room to stretch.
Unless specific plants grow in sandy or rocky soil, try to remove this material from your ground. To rework soil dig up and remove unwanted material 18-24 inches deep and then add compost, topsoil, Soil Pep, and organic material. To break apart a clay soil add a mixture of organic material with clay busters (Soil Pep).
Remove weeds before planting by hoeing and or with weed controlling products.
Mulch helps to keep weeds down as well.
Make sure to remove the whole weed the 1st time. Don’t let weeds go to seed.
A year-round weeding program saves time and labor in the long run. We recommend using Corn Gluten for an organic way to get rid of your garden weeds.
Mulch in fall. Leave a mulch-free ring 1 inch away from the stem of plants.
Mulching conserves water, keeps soil evenly moist and stay moist longer, and requires less frequent watering. It keeps down weeds, keeps soil and nutrients from washing away during hard rains, and keeps soil temperatures more even (which protects plant roots).
2 to 3 inches of mulch is enough. Snow is a great natural insulator, so don’t clear it away.
Types of bark – Bark Pieces, Shredded Bark, Eko Compost and Other Soils (which can be worked back into the soil in spring).
Don’t use sawdust, it’s unattractive, splintery, hard to work through, and steals nitrogen from plants as it breaks down (causing poor plant growth). Peat Moss forms a hard, dry crust on the soil, making it hard for water and nutrients to get through. It’s also acidic which lowers the soil pH as it leaches.
Fertilizers provide nitrogen (N), phosphorus (P), and potassium (K) for your plants. This is the NPK ratio that you will see on bags or packages of fertilizers (ex: 2(N)-2(P)-1(K)). Make sure you know your plant’s needs before dumping just anything on them. Be aware not to over-fertilize, which will harm your plants.
Plants also need other nutrients (calcium, magnesium and sulfur) along with trace elements (boron, chlorine, copper, iron, zinc, manganese, etc.). These can be found in many mixed fertilizers or by themselves.
A soil test is beneficial before planting to see if the ground is missing any essential elements so you can correct the problem early.
Ex: Fish Emulsion and Seaweed Extract – supplies essential plant nutrients for green foliage, vigorous root systems, and solid plant structure. For indoor and outdoor plants.
Cow/Animal Manure – use as a top dressing for established plants. Raw manure is too hot for newly planted plants. Use bagged manure to ensure it’s been aged properly.
Peat Moss – combine with other soil amendments; use no more than ½ in a mix. It acidifies the Ph in soil and adds humic acid.
Careful site selection, soil preparation, adequate and proper irrigation and mulching are some ways to help plants resist pests.
Some insect examples are:
Aphids – many colors, pear shaped, winged or wingless. Leaves, stems and buds are distorted and sticky, also all females are born pregnant.
Beetle, Asiatic – long, brown, velvety. Leaves have irregular holes in edges.
Beetle, Japanese – long, metallic blue or green with coppery wing covers. Leaves and flowers have holes and may be skeletonized.
Borers – moths or beetles. Stems exude sawdust-like material and break, leaves wilt. Iris borers cause irregular tunnels in leaves as well as damaged or rotted rhizomes.
Tree Bug – usually shield-shaped, brown, black, green or brilliantly colored and patterned. Buds and leaves become deformed or dwarfed.
Cutworms – gray or brownish moths. Seedlings or young plants are cut off at soil level.
Leafminers – Wasp-like with yellow-striped black bodies and clear wings. Leaves have tan or brown blotches or serpentine tunnels.
Scales – Grayish, brownish orange, reddish brown, or cottony white shells. Males have wings and females do not.
Slugs & Snails – long, gray, tan, green, black, yellow or spotted, eyes at the tips of small tentacles. Snails have a single spiral shell. Slugs are shell-less. Leaves – large, ragged holes. Product: Slug/Snail specific.
Spider Mites – Reddish brown or pale spider-like mites with 8 legs, wingless. Leaves become stippled, reddish to yellow, and have fine webbing.
Thrips – Tiny with yellow, brown, or blackish bodies and 2 pairs of fringed wings. Flower buds die, petals become distorted and growth is stunted.
Whiteflies – White, moth-like insects. Leaves turn yellow, and plant is weakened.
To control most pests in the garden you can use: Eight, Nolo Bait, Spinosad, Diatomaceous Earth, Neem Oil.
Perennials, Trees & Shrubs are more likely to be disease-free then annuals or vegetables because they contain a mixture of plants. A specific disease will usually attack a specific plant. Also, diseases will appear if practices such as adding compost, organic matter, mulching, and cleaning up plant debris in fall have not been done.
Types of diseases are Bacterial, Fungal and Viral.
Some examples are:
Bacterial Blight – small, dark, water soaked spots on foliage that enlarge, then brown and dry. Dried areas may drop out, leaving holes. Spots may be ringed with yellow or light-green.
Bacterial Leaf Spot – small brown or purple spots on leaf surface. Entire leaves may yellow, wither and drop.
Downy Mildew – pale-green or yellow areas on tops of leaves, bottom of leaves have light-gray, purplish, or white fungi. Leaves wilt, turn brown, and die.
Powdery Mildew – on tops of leaves as white or gray patches. Leaves become distorted and may drop.
Rust – underside of leaves have pinhead-size powdery orange or yellow spots. Upper side has pale-yellow or white patches. Deforms leaves and stems and causes early leaf drop.
Viruses – leaves and flowers are greenish yellow, distorted, leaves mottled or streaked, new growth is spindly and plants are stunted.
Wilt – infected leaves and stems wilt. Leaf margins may yellow and curl upward, followed by leaf drop.
Chlorosis – Iron deficiency, and lack of chlorophyll in the roots and trunk of the damaged plant, yellow leaves, brown crispy in the summer. Use Ironite or for longer treatment use Ross Root Feeder and iron tablets.
To control most of the Diseases on plants you can use: Fung-Away, Fung-onil, Liquid Fungicide, Liquid Systemic Fungicide, Halt, Liquid Sulfur, Dusting Sulfur.
Healthy Roots Make Healthy Trees
The root system of a tree is a store-house for essential food reserves needed to produce spring foliage. Roots absorb and transport water and minerals from the soil to the rest of the tree. They also anchor the portion of the tree above the ground.
Where Roots Grow
Tree root systems consist of large perennial roots and smaller, short-lived, feeder roots.
The large, woody tree roots and their primary branches annually increase in size and grow horizontally. They are located in the top 6” of the soil and do not grow down more than 3-7 feet.
Feeder roots average a size of 1/16” in diameter and are the major portion of the root system’s surface area. These smaller roots grow outward and upward from the large roots near the soil surface where minerals, water and oxygen are abundant. Their major function is water and mineral absorption. Under normal conditions feeder roots die and are replaced on a continual basis.
Typically, the root system of a tree extends outward past the dripline, 2-4 times the diameter of the average tree’s crown.
Why Roots Grow Where They Do
Roots grow where water, minerals and oxygen are found in the soil. The greatest supply of these are located in the surface layer of the soil so the plant has the largest concentration of feeders in this zone.
Causes of Root Injury and Disease
One of the biggest killers of urban trees is soil compaction. It restricts water and oxygen uptake by roots, and is associated with roads, parking lots, foot traffic, construction machinery, livestock, poor soil preparation, and other causes.
Changes in soil depth around trees, by adding only 4-6” of soil over a root zone, drastically reduces the amount of oxygen and water available to the roots. Removal of soil around a tree can expose and injure roots, change the soil conditions where roots grow, and reduce water availability.
Over-watering causes the soil pore (air) spaces to fill with water, restricting oxygen uptake.
Under-watering does not supply sufficient water for proper root development.
Over-fertilization can injure or kill roots.
Under-fertilization results in a lack of the necessary minerals essential to maintain a healthy tree.
Competition for water and minerals between tree roots, bushes, grass and flowers can seriously stress trees. Also beware of routine soil preparation for flowers if it might damage tree roots.
Other causes are improper chemical use, wounding through digging and trenching, and addition of deep mulches/plastics/pavement that restrict or suffocate roots.
After a tree is established, any activity that changes the soil condition and/or the oxygen and water supply, can be extremely detrimental.
Types of Root Diseases
Fungi that occur on small feeder roots are numerous (Phytophthora, Pythium, Fusarium). These break down the feeder roots and reduce the trees mineral and water absorbing capability.
Fungi that attack large, woody roots suppress growth, decay food transporting cells, reduce food storage and reduce structural support for the tree.
Root Disease Signs & Symptoms
Typical symptoms associated with root diseases are often confused with mineral deficiencies because high numbers of dead roots reduce water and mineral uptake.
Symptoms of root disease include small, yellow chlorotic foliage, reduced growth, scorch, tufted leaves at the end of branches and branch die-back, mushrooms or conkers at the base of a tree, white fungal growth under the bark. Construction damage may appear several years after the damage was done.
To verify a disease carefully excavate roots removing a small patch of the bark. A brown coloration beneath the bark indicates a dead root, while a living, healthy root usually appears white or light colored.