QUICK REFERENCE PLANTING GUIDE
1. Light/Sun Exposure - Full to partial sun.
2. USDA Hardiness Zones - 3 to 7.
3. Planting Distance - 5 to 10 feet apart in ground. 1 plant per 24 inch or larger container.
4. Mature Height/Spread - 6 feet tall with a head span of up to 10 feet upon maturity. "Red Pixie" will be 4 to 6 feet tall and wide. 'Manchurian' and 'Miss. Kim will be 10 to 15 feet tall with a similar spread.
5. Bloom Time - Late spring to summer.
6. Planting Instructions - See Below.
A. Dig a hole large enough to give the roots plenty of room with a few inches of space beyond the root tips and the sides of the hole. Build a mound of soil in the bottom of the hole and spread the roots in a natural position atop the mound.
B. Position the plant so that the previous soil line will be even with ground level. The stem/trunk will be darker in color below the original planting line and lighter in color above it.
C. Once the plant is positioned at the proper planting depth begin filling the hole with soil. Work the soil around the roots with your hands. When the hole is half filled tamp the soil to remove any air pockets.
D. Fill the planting hole with water and allow it soak in. Straighten the plant in the hole and finish filling with soil.
E. Form a "saucer" of soil around the edges of the planting hole and fill it with water.
F. Stake the tree to assist the roots in getting anchored. Staking will also maintain upper balance so that the trunk will continue to grow straight.
Although these plants will perform well in average garden soils of all types, we recommend having your soil tested periodically by the local County Extension Office. These tests can determine if the soil needs any amendments to enhance your plants' growth and performance. See below for our recommended practice to improve your soil without any additional testing:
1. Spade or till the soil to a depth of 12-18 inches.
2. To provide nutrients and improve drainage, add organic matter to your soil by mixing in a 2 to 4-inch layer of dehydrated manure, garden compost, shredded leaves, and/or peat moss.
3. After active growth begins, periodically feed with Cottage Farms' water soluble Carefree Bud-N-Flower Booster for Acid Loving Plants. Plants in containers need more frequent watering and feeding, especially when in active growth and bloom.
Watering - Your plants require 1" of rainfall (or equivalent watering) each week when planted in the ground. Do not allow plants in containers to dry out. In a container that is exposed to full sun, water it well at least once every other day, and possibly every day, during periods of intense summer heat. You may wish to temporarily move containerized plants to an area where they are shielded from the hot summer sun (i.e. in the shade of a tree, on a porch near an overhang).
Mulching - Apply a 2-4 inch layer of shredded bark, compost or other organic mulch around your plants to promote moisture retention, maintain even soil temperatures, and to discourage weed growth.
Weeding - Keep the area around your plants free of weeds. Weeds compete with other plants for food, water and light. Walk around the garden periodically and pull weeds, including the roots, as soon as you see them. Mulch also assists in keeping weeds down.
Grooming - As soon as flowers have faded in the spring, old flower heads should be cut off. At the same time, remove suckers growing from the base of the plant and remove any branches that become overlapped, damaged, or unsightly.
Feeding - Feed your plants once every 2-3 weeks during the growing season with a water-soluble fertilizer such as Cottage Farms' Carefree Bud-N-Flower Booster for Acid Loving Plants. Discontinue feeding after September 1st so your plants can harden off for winter dormancy. Resume fertilizing when new growth appears in the spring.
Winterizing - The time to protect your plants in the garden is after the ground has frozen. At that time, apply a winter mulch of evergreen boughs, straws or leaves to prevent lifting of the plant's roots during alternating periods of freezing and thawing.
For container planting, move plants next to your home's southern foundation for added warmth and protection. They may also be moved into an unheated, protected area such as a garage or cellar. If moved to a protected area be sure you water them well once every 2 to 3 weeks as needed.
In spring, remove the mulch from in-ground plantings. Also, bring containerized plants back out into the garden sunlight where they will immediately begin to repeat their yearly garden performance.
CAUTION: Not all plant material is edible. Though most plants are harmless, some contain toxic substances which can cause headaches, nausea, dizziness, or other discomforts. As a general rule, only known food products should be eaten. In case of ingestion, please contact your local poison control center at once and advise them of the plant ingested. Keep out of reach of children.