Ask a Question
Notify Me On Question Update
Email this Question
I live in salt lake city, and have very hard rocky soil. I would like to plant a few varieties of trees for shade and decor (like to enjoy them in my own lifetime)I realize I'll need to excavate for good soil and root ball. Any suggestions?
Rate This FAQ
There are several trees that can be planted in Salt Lake City, in fact more trees are here now, then when the pioneers arrived. Ideally for successful tree planting and survival you need to know a few things about your site. One is the pH of your soil. Generally, our soils are alkaline, that is have a high pH. To be certain of your soil pH, texture, salinity, potassium and phosphorous levels you can submit a soil sample to our USU Analytical Labs. The basic soil test is $14 which is a worthwhile investment considering trees in nurseries can cost up to several hundred dollars. Excavating is not recommended, as most tree roots are growing in the top 12 to 18 inches of soil, and the deeper you dig into your soil, you are encountering parent mineral material that is very low in organic matter and microorganisms, that is what plants need to grow.
For selecting trees, it is good to know your site. Soil is definitely one of the considerations, but also sun exposure, other landscape features (patio, deck, lawn area, overhead power lines) that may compete or interfere with the growth of the tree, as well as personal preference for evergreen or deciduous trees.
There is a great resource available online by our USU Extension Forester, Dr. Mike Kuhns on Selecting and Planting Landscape Trees. http://extension.usu.edu/forestry/HomeTown/HO_TreeSelection.htm
There is good information on planting as well as a many species of trees listed with their cultural and species characteristics that fit your specific site.
If you have any further questions, please feel free to contact me.
Submit Your Suggestion
Other Questions In This Topic
- I planted some fruit trees fall 2009 and am noticing tons of fruit on them already in this first year. I've heard I should pick them all and wait until the second year to let them mature. Is this right?
- My new lawn I had hydroseeded last year went to seed this year and and is still looking poorly is there anything I can do to bring it back to looking good again?
- I have several large beds in which I would like to plant shrubs, perennials, and some annuals. I am wondering what, if any, weed barrier I should use for these beds. I have heard different opinions advocating weed fabric, newspaper, or no weed barrier at all other than a layer of bark/mulch. If a thick layer of mulch alone is virtually as effective as weed barrier, I would rather avoid the expense and hassle of laying the barrier. Which is the best option?
- We created square foot gardens last year and have discovered the cat has used them for a litter box over the winter and spring. There isn't a large amount of feces,which we remove, but we are concerned that it may have contaminated the soil. Should we dig it out and start over?
- I have a healthy looking aspen tree whose leaves turn brown and fall off in early September without ever turning colors. I live in Midway and Aspens do well here. Do you know the cause and can it be corrected?
- We recently bought a home in Salt Lake city. The parking strip has very hard soil and weeds mixed with grass. Should we till it under and start over or air-rate it, keep it watered and sprinkle some grass seed on it in the fall or spring? We planted a sycomore tree (Bloodgood London Plane) and I think we stressed it by overwatering. About 50% of the leaves look sun scorched, some very dry and other leaves are green, full and lush, will it snap out of it? Should I air-rate the ground with a pitch fork around it?
- I have a new laurel plant whose leaves have turned half brown. Is this caused by heat?
- Our home was built in 1998 and we are the second owners. The first owners landscaped the yard, but didn't consider that the trees, shrubs, etc. would grow. We have trees that were planted too close to the sidewalk and shrubs that were planted too close to the house. They are beautiful, but too close. We also have a large cottonwood tree in the backyard that provides good shade, but its root are now pushing above the ground. I think I know the answer, but is there a good way to redo the landscaping without removing all of the good features at once?