Friday, October 20, 2023

Planting a Possumhaw Holly Tree

 Linda decided she wanted a Possumhaw Holly tree in the back yard.  She found it thru the Lady Bird Johnson Wildflower Center, which describes it as a "small, deciduous tree or shrub,15-30 ft. tall".  It was hard to find, but she bought one from a nursery in Tennessee which mailed it to her.

Of course, our tree doesn't look like that (yet).  It's a bare stick with an attached root ball.

Linda wants it planted where the jungle was, and we've already cleared that off, so all we have to do is peel back the mulch and black plastic and dig a hole.

This turns out to be harder than we thought since the exact spot where she wants it planted has a buried stump.

And once we get the stump out, we hit rock.

But after hours of work, we get a hole ready for it.

Of course removing the stump, and the rock, means we have to bring in bags of dirt.  Seven bags (40 pounds each), plus a couple of bags of mulch.  Home Depot. $27.24.


The result is a nicely planted tree.  Note most of what appears to be the tree here is actually the bamboo stake that holds it up -- the tree itself is barely a foot tall.

Monday, October 9, 2023

Planting a Lacey Oak

Having lost two trees on the west side of the house, from the storms that killed them, having them cut down, and digging out their stumps, we now have a mostly exposed West Side of the house.  So it seems reasonable to plant a new tree (or trees) to replace them.  We want something that will be big enough to shade the side of the house, but not so tall as to shade the solar panels on the roof.  Plus we want a resilient, native tree that can tolerate the cold of winter and the heat of summer.  A Lacey Oak seems to fit our needs. 

 Lacey Oaks will grow to 25 to 35 feet tall.  It is drought-tolerant, oak wilt-resistant and can grow in poor soil.

We found one at Lawns (Leander Area Wholesale Nursery Supply) Tree Farm in Leander.  Ours was a one-year-old 1-gallon container, for $10. 

First we needed to pick a spot.  We tried to put it midway between the last remaining Elm, at the front corner of the house, and the big oak tree in the back -- about 30 feet from both.  

 We dug a hole, much too deep and wide, then filled it back in until it was the right depth for the little tree.  Planted the tree, and filled the hole back in with the dirt we dug out.  


Then we bought a bag (one cubic foot) of top soil to spread around the tree, and covered that with a bag (two cubic foot) of hardwood mulch.

The tree is currently about 15 inches tall.