Trees are a large investment. Time, money and care provide them with a great start. When relocating, many people want to take their trees to the new location. While challenging, with the proper care, fruit trees can be replanted and thrive in their new environment.
Test the soil of the new and old locations. Verify that the pH and mineral contents of the new location are similar to those of the old habitat. If not, supplement with the necessary fertilizer and nutrient solutions.
Determine the optimal season for transport. Ideally, trees should be transplanted in the fall or early spring while they are still reasonably dormant and the weather is mild.
Cut back 1/3 of the plant's overall growth to provide the root ball a chance to grow while supporting the smaller tree. Generously water the tree the night before transplanting. This gives the soil an added ability to stabilize the roots. Wrap the tree's remaining foliage with foliage-wrapping material to lessen the amount of scratches while transplanting.
Cut a circle into the soil around the tree to define where the digging will take place. The general rule of thumb is that any tree smaller than one inch in diameter should have a 12-inch root ball and those over one-inch should have an 18-inch root ball.
The next morning, use a shovel to remove the tree, using its root ball guide from the night before to dig the hole. Place the tree on the flat piece of cardboard for easy and gentle transport. Move the tree to its new location.
Use the shovel to dig the new hole. If you are using an auger, go back over the walls of the hole with the shovel to soften them. This will allow the tree the best chance to penetrate the walls with its new root system in a timely fashion.
Lay the root ball into the hole and verify that the tree is sitting straight. Fill the hole halfway with soil, then water the tree. Fill the hole the rest of the way and water the tree again. Cover the area with mulch and apply the vitamin B fertilizer as directed on the package.