Washington Hawthorn tree - leaning #335665 - Ask Extension

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Washington Hawthorn tree - leaning #335665

Asked June 23, 2016, 2:17 PM EDT

Hello, I'd like some advice on what to do with my 4-year-old Washington Hawthorn tree. It was sent from the Arbor Day Foundation, and I had it planted in a nursery space for the first year, where I regularly watered it. I tried to prune it correctly, and then transplanted it to the final growing space. It has been mulched, and happily growing well for 3 years in a space with good sunlight. Just recently, however, it started to droop over. It this a natural tendency of this tree, or should it be staked? It is quite high, so will be hard to stake (my cat is in some of the photos for scale). There is a lot of new, light green growth. Could it be growing too fast? Any advice is appreciated. Thank you.

Susquehanna County Pennsylvania

Expert Response

If you put soil amendments in the ground before planting the tree, the decay of the organic matter may be the cause. It's important to plant trees in the native soil in which they are to grow. That way they can send down anchor roots and start making relationships with certain symbiotic fungi. If there is a difference between the planting soil and the native soil, the tree will contain itself in the planting hole and not be strongly rooted. If this is the case, I would move the tree and plant in again in native soil. Here is a link to an article on planting a tree.
Eileen East Replied June 26, 2016, 10:17 AM EDT

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