How to Plant a Baby Tree


A baby tree, otherwise known as seedling, needs special care in order to thrive and grow into a strong adult tree. Visit any garden center or nursery and you will find dozens of seedlings for most varieties of trees that grow well in your area. Seed catalogs and online vendors often carry traditional and exotic baby trees that, once purchased, are shipped to your home.

Step 1

Store seedlings in a cool, dry place until they can be planted in the earth. Keep the roots moist but not soaking wet.

Step 2

Dig a hole in a well-drained, sunny location that is twice as wide and approximately the same depth than the root ball of the seedling.

Step 3

Spread the roots out in the hole and back fill the hole with the removed soil. Press, or tamp, down the soil to remove air from around the roots.

Step 4

Water the seedling until water stands on the surface of the soil for one minute.

Step 5

Spread 1 to 2 inches of mulch around the seedling, using pine bark or hay, to help the soil retain moisture during dry periods.

Things You'll Need

  • Shovel
  • Pine bark or hay mulch


  • Oklahoma State University: Mighty Oaks From Little Acorns (PDF)
  • University of New Hampshire Extension: Planting and Care of Tree Seedlings (PDF)
  • Tree People: Plant the Right Way
Keywords: plant seedling trees, plant baby trees, grow seedling trees

About this Author

G. K. Bayne is a freelance writer, currently writing for Demand Studios where her expertise in back-to-basics, computers and electrical equipment are the basis of her body of work. Bayne began her writing career in 1975 and has written for Demand since 2007.