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Will a christmas tree survive if dug up and planted in a pot?

Hi everyone.

Ive recently taken on allotment plot and it has a christmas tree (probably around 6.5-7ft) on it. I dont really want to get rid of it as it seems a waste of a perfectly good tree, but it also feels very in the way.
My ideal scenario would be to dig it up and plant it in a pot, then it can stay on the allotment all year and get brought in at christmas.
I just want to know if the tree will survive doing this? from a little inspection the roots seem quite established. I have no idea if it has been there for a long time or has only recently been planted out.
If i were to go ahead with it, what size pot would it need to be planted in for best chance of survival?      


  • FairygirlFairygirl west central ScotlandPosts: 46,167
    Hi @hollie.cannell - the main problems will be finding a suitable pot for it if the roots are substantial, and then keeping it healthy and thriving. Do you have a photo?
    If you think it's recently planted, that would be easier, and you could have a little dig round about it to see what the root system is like. However, if it's been there a while and is established, that's far more difficult. 
    It's possible to root prune established shrubs, by slicing down with a spade to create a channel round the root system, and then leaving it for several months [autumn really] by which time it may have responded well enough by producing some fine roots, and can then be dug up.
    It would still be tricky, and as far as a pot is concerned, it would need to be big enough to contain the existing root system, plus a bit more. Firs of any kind need lots of water, but also decent drainage, so hotter, drier spells are the most difficult times  :)

    The amount of top growth is the biggest problem with moving any large tree or shrub, and in this instance, cutting it all back to make that easier, isn't an option. With other shrubs, that's the normal approach, so that the roots have less canopy to support while trying to establish. Sorry if that doesn't sound very optimistic  :/
    It's a place where beautiful isn't enough of a word....

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