Immediate Care Upon Receiving Your Order

trees planting image

Woody Plants

If You Can Plant Woodies Within 48 Hours (Ideal)

Leave the plastic wrapping around the root ball. Add some water to re- moisten the packing material and store your trees and shrubs in a cool shaded place like a shed, barn or cellar. Avoid heat and sunlight.

If You Cannot Plant Within 48 Hours

You can keep plants for a week or two by following one of these temporary measures and continuing to water as needed:

  • Open your package and inspect for damage. Fold the plastic back from around the tops of trees and shrubs. Keep the damp shredded newspaper around the roots and re-wrap the plastic around the root ball, packing firmly to eliminate air pockets. Water as needed to keep the roots moist, but don’t let them stand in water. Keep the trees in a cool shaded or dark place like a shed, barn, cellar or garage, but don’t allow the plants to freeze before you get them in the ground. Avoid heat and sunlight.
  • You could also “heel in” your trees in a protected cool shady spot. Dig a trench or turn back an appropriate amount of earth and bury the roots; tamp firmly to remove air pockets. Water thoroughly. Plant in final location as soon as possible.

Caring for Other Plants Until Planting Time

Asparagus: Open up the bag and store dry in a cool place. Plant when the soil is workable.

Hops: Refrigerate slightly moistened rhizomes in a plastic bag. Plant when the soil is workable.

Horseradish: Open the packaging slightly to allow the plants to breathe. Leave in their packaging in a cool place (35–50°). They want to stay moist but not wet. Plant when the soil is workable.

Mushroom Spawn: Refrigerate or store in a cool place until ready to use, except for Almond Agaricus, which should be kept cool but not refrigerated.

Rhubarb: Open the packaging slightly to allow the plants to breathe. Leave in their packaging in a cool place (35–50°). They want to stay moist but not wet. Plant when the soil is workable.

Strawberries: Keep cold or refrigerate between arrival and planting. We ship with roots slightly on the dry side. If you cannot plant them for a while, uncover the roots, mist them with water and re-cover, leaving tops exposed. Place bundle in paper bag and store on the bottom shelf of your fridge. Don’t be alarmed if the tops become brown or mushy: they will generate new leaves. Plant when the soil is workable and the threat of hard frost has passed.

Herbaceous Perennial Plants: Open each bag and check the stock immediately. Roots and crowns should be firm and pliable, not squishy or brittle. If they are slightly dry, add a little water. Generally, a little surface mold is the harmless result of winter storage and will not affect the plant’s future performance. You may plant directly outside if all danger of freezing has passed, otherwise store them in their open bags in a cool (35–40°) location or pot up plants in well-drained slightly moist potting mix. Avoid coiling roots in the bottom of undersized containers. Set pots in a protected spot in part-shade until weather allows you to plant. Read full planting instructions here.

Plants leafing out?

Some plants may have broken dormancy and begun to leaf out by the time you’re ready for planting. These plants will do fine with some care to slowly introduce them to the sun.
  • If several days of cloudy or rainy weather are imminent, plant immediately. No further precautions are needed.
  • If the weather will be sunny, keep the roots wrapped and damp, and set the plants in partial shade for a few days to harden off. Plant when the new growth looks green and strong. The early leaves may get sunscald but the plants will send out new leaves and look normal within a few months.