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DEEP Tree Planting Grants and the Inspection of Newly-Planted Trees

When assessing trees newly-planted under DEEP tree planting grants, DEEP Forestry inspectors will evaluate the following: 
  1. Is the tree planted at the proper depth? Many trees are planted too deeply. The inspector will look to see if the root flare/trunk flare is at or slightly above soil level.
  2. Has all of the twine been removed from around the base of the tree?
  3. For balled and burlapped trees, has the burlap and wire basket been removed from the top and around the sides of the root ball?
  4. Have any obvious root problems been corrected? For example, are there any potentially girdling roots that need to be removed?
  5. Has the planting hole been refilled to or slightly above the soil level? A soil or mulch ring is OK if outside the root ball. Is the soil around the root ball excessively tamped down?
  6. Is the tree properly mulched? There should be 3-4" of mulch spread evenly over the root ball but not in contact with the trunk of the tree.
  7. Was the tree watered thoroughly at the time of planting and has it been watered regularly thereafter? If a watering device such as a gator bag is being used, does it have water in it?
  8. Does the tree show signs of having been improperly pruned at the time of planting? Trees should not be pruned at time of planting, except to remove dead, damaged or diseased branches, or, possibly, to remove a competing leader.
  9. The tree should not be staked unless needed. Does this tree need to be staked? If it is staked, is it staked properly? Should any existing staking now be removed? 
Content last updated October 6, 2016.