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Oak Trees

Kathy9Kathy9 Posts: 8

A few years ago I collected a number of acorns while walking in the park and tried to grow them for fun.  As a complete novice I didn't expect them to work and was surprised when they all grew! I gave most to a friend who was growing a wood on her land, and kept two which I foolishly planted in bare ground at the end of my garden, again not really expecting them to 'do'.  They are now taller than I am, and it has occurred to me that although I think our garden can accommodate one of them, it may overshadow my neighbour's garden and also two oak trees is an oak too many!  I would like to transplant them this winter but will this kill them? I had originally thought I could prune them to a manageable size but I now understand if I wanted to do that I would have needed to grow them in a pot.  If I decide to relocate them altogether, would oaks of this size have any value to the council for growing in the park?  Any advice very welcome.  I live in County Down, NI. 

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  • pansyfacepansyface PEAK DISTRICT DerbyshirePosts: 20,554

    Hello Kathy9.

    You can certainly dig them up in the winter and move them. Just be sure to dig well away from the trunk - at least as far away as the side branches extend - and dig down as far as you can be bothered to, the deeper the better. You may find that there is a lot of soil that falls off and they don't have enormous roots, but at least you have taken as much as is possible. 

    Choose a mild day to do this. Frost and snow are not good for transplanting.

    I have done this with young trees. In my younger days I took some to a place in the country and planted them where they wouldn't be dug up or have a road built over them.

    You could ask a local school perhaps if they would like one for the children.

    Apophthegm -  a big word for a small thought.
  • treehugger80treehugger80 Posts: 1,923

    if you want to move them now give them a good soak the day before, get the biggest root ball you can and get them in the ground again ASAP, make sure you give them a good soak afterwards. I've move a 20 foot tall birch tree in the past, it took five of us to lift the root ball and it transplanted fine.

    bit of advice tho is to dig the hole its going in before digging the tree up. you can always expand the hole if needed but the bigger the hole the better. and remember to stake the tree afterwards otherwise it'll fall over at the first big winds.

    it would be better to move it in winter tho, once all the leaves have died back

  • They transplant well.   My partner has just moved a load of oak and beech to the area of the farm that they need to be.  (They get started off where they're relatively sheltered and then in our case, they're often moved when they're about 5 foot tall and just put any place that's convenient and until they're big enough and he's ready to plant them where it will ultimately be their permanent home.   

    So ours get moved twice and have never suffered any detriment.

  • WelshonionWelshonion Posts: 3,114
    I would contact the council and ask them if they would like the tree. And where should it go? If you can't find anywhere for it, I would dispose of it and do a bit of guerilla gardening and plant some acorns here and there.



    It will move well in the dormant season.
  • TaraMaidenTaraMaiden Posts: 46

    If the Council turns you down, contact a local farm, school, college... they're sometimes grateful for extra plants like these....

  • Kathy9Kathy9 Posts: 8

    This is all brilliant advice and good news, as I thought that moving them at this stage would kill them, but they will be fine till the cooler weather.  I have also had a thought, as I have a friend who works for a local country park and I bet she'd take them.  I would love them to go somewhere where they would meet full maturity.  I will feel like I've contributed something to our environment.  Thanks again for the great advice. image

  • Try a local farmer.   We're always planting trees at our field borders.     They provide great cover and shelter.  Just have to be careful with oak and not plant them where horses or cattle can get to them because the acorns are toxic to them.   

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