Saturday, December 15, 2012

Moving a Volunteer Hazelnut Tree

I didn't plan on moving this tree. While cleaning out compost bins, I looked over to it and decided to. This is a volunteer hazel nut tree.  It's in a corner by the house, with a fence on the South side, the house on the West side, and not much sun on the East side. It's been cut down once or twice. Maybe more. Probably about 6 or 8 years old.

Before digging.  Hard to see if this is one or several, and hard to see where the stem meets the roots.  I made my best guess, and dug under the tree with the shovel.  It came up very easily.  The soil is soft here, having had many years of bark mulch.

I imagine these are "squirrel planted".  Our friendly Sciurus arborists have planted a lot of nuts around the yard.  In addition to scarfing up every nut from the trees.
Clearly 2 trees.  Possibly one multi-stem, or more than one growing together.  I think it's one multistem.
Added potting soil to keep roots moist for transport.
Divided almost by accident.  I moved the stems around to see where they were joined, and they just broke apart.  Now I have a larger one with a lot of roots, and a smaller one with a few roots.  Plus 2 other smaller ones, one from this bunch and the other clearly separate.  The small ones are back into the potting soil while I decide what to do with them.  Maybe, by growing more, and larger, nut trees, there will be one or two nuts left for me to taste.
Planted. Now I have a row of 4 Hazelnut trees. Two of bearing age, one one-foot-tall seedling, and this 6 foot tall sapling.  I planted it as straight as I could.  I'll keep the top for a while to tie to a post and straighten it a bit more, then prune next summer for scaffold branches similar to the others.  This sapling is about 7 foot tall.  It did not look that big in the corner, due to laying on its side.

I gave it a good sprinkling of Plant Success Mycorrhiza, which I have no proof is helpful but am doing anyway.  Planted in the native topsoil, and mulched with compost.  Settled in for the winter.

Amazing to be planting trees in mid December.


  1. Hope you have success with your transplanting. I gather wild hickory nuts, as well as black walnuts. It's a good winter-time activity cracking them open.

  2. Thanks for the comment. Wild hickory nuts - sounds great! Didn't Euell Gibbons collect those a long time ago?