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Tree Transplanting Service in Elgin, IL

The process of tree transplanting is exactly what it sounds like, it is literally moving a tree from one location to another location.  Although trees root into the earth forming extremely and incredibly strong and solid root system, that doesn’t mean that they are permanently affixed there until the end of their life.  There is a meticulous and careful process that can be undertaken to move the tree to a new home.  

There are several reasons why you might want to move a tree, but the most populat reason is because the tree has outgrown its current location and needs additional breathing space, more sunlight, or access to more water.  When this situation happens, it’s best to move the tree before it starts showing signs of major distress.

When to consider transplanting a tree













Just like most other things in nature, you need to consider a trees natural cycles.  In this case, there are certain times of the year that are better suited to transplanting a tree, which typically tends to be when the tree is dormant during the spring and fall.  These times minimize damage to the tree and create less stress which can make a tree susceptible to disease and breakage. In addition, drought can affect the rate at which your tree recovers from the stressful situation.  

Remember, trees need water to remain hydrated, which they do through the root system that is buried in the ground.  These roots soak up water like a sponge and uptake water to the limbs of the tree where they eventually feed and encourage growth of the canopy.  When a tree is transplanted, its access to water is temporarily suspended so it’s always better to do this when its need for water is at its lowest.  This happens during the fall and spring when it doesn’t have any leaves or fruit that it needs to nourish or maintain alive.

In that case, shouldn’t I transplant in the winter time?

The short answer is “No”.  While trees are dormant in the winter time as well, the below-freezing cold temperatures could with snow and frost make digging out roots extremely difficult and dangerous.  Frost and ice can actually case roots to burst and the actual process of digging is much more difficult when the ground is frozen. Successfully transplanting a tree in the winter time is minimized and the tree’s ability to bounce back from the stressful situation is dramatically lowered.

Things to consider in the new area where you’ll be planting your tree

There is no one-size-fits-all response to this question, all trees are different and have different ideal conditions to thrive.  Some trees respond better to less direct sunlight while others thrive with the greater sunlight they receive. Some trees require better drainage as they cannot absorb water as well, while others need extra room to allow the roots to grow and spread out.  Your particular tree species needs to be identified first to understand the conditions it will take to allow your tree to thrive in its new environment.

Mature Vs. Young Trees, Which is Better To Transplant?

While you would think that young trees are much more adaptable and recover quite well to a transplant from one location to another, they also have susceptibilities to certain conditions.  Young trees aren’t as developed and mature so the aftershock of the transplant process can affect them more than a mature tree. Mature root systems are able to absorb moisture and nutrients at a faster rate than young trees.

However, age can work against a trees ability to recover, although for the most part it’s been found that most trees (young and old) recover according to the level of after care they receive post transplant. 










Do All Trees Do Well With A Transplant?

Some species of trees have a more fibrous root system that allows them to soak up more moisture than others.  Typically these types of trees will do extremely well during and after a transplant procedure. Specifically in the midwest and northern regions of the U.S. the Red Maple is very resilient to a transplant, but in reality, as long as proper planning has taken place, and a tree has been conditioned for such a procedure then almost all trees will respond favorably.  

Conditioning a tree means proper fertilization, root pruning, digging the proper size root ball, and watering before and after transplant.  These steps will ensure greater chances of a quick recovery. We’ve also noticed that it is very important to implement a pest control and management program along with a strong fertilization regimen after the tree has been placed in its new location to ensure that the roots transition properly.  This transition typically lasts between 12-24 months.

Tips For A Successful Tree Replanting

  1. Ensure that you have proper expectations in terms of time and budget to get the project done.  Transplanting a tree is time intensive and outsourcing this work to a professional company can be costly
  2. Your beloved tree will lose a large portion of its root system so make sure that the entire tree is well hydrated before you begin the process
  3. Your tree should be wrapped up properly, especially in the crown, after uprooting to reduce limb breakage from the natural elements
  4. It is an absolute MUST that you water the tree immediately after relocation - this may be the most important step in ensuring a quick recovery
  5. Follow up with a strong fertilization and pest management protocol as your tree is more susceptible to disease.

Below is the best time to transplant some of the most common trees in the midwest

  • Pine or Evergreen trees - generally early fall is best
  • Oak trees - early spring is best, usually around early to mid march is ideal
  • Maple trees - maple trees are known to continue growing well into the late fall so consider transplanting late fall around late November into December time frame
  • Fruit trees - transplant in early spring time before the growing season starts

If you are considering transplanting a tree to another area on your property then you need to make sure you are working with the right tree care company.  We have the experience, equipment and man power to assist in this project.  Feel free to call us to describe your plans, we can make an on-site visit and provide an estimate based on your needs!