Concolor Fir and Norway Spruce
My wife and i moved into our new home last September and this April we planted (2) Concolor Fir and (1) Norway Spruce in our back yard.
-Zone 5a (Central Iowa)
-Native soil is clay, but not real hard packed
-Our trees were purchased from a tree farm about 4 miles from our house
-The concolor firs were 10' and 11' tall and the norway spruce was 12' tall
-The trees were spaded in
-At the top of the concolor firs, there is probably 10" of new growth already and on the mid to lower branches there is probably 3-5" of new growth present.
-At the top of the norway spruce there is probably 10" of new growth already and on the mid to lower branches there is probably 2-4" of new growth present.
-About every 2-3 weeks around the drip line i will slow drip 5 gallons of water mixed with a plant start fertilizer (3-10-3 with rooting hormone and some other goodies) and after that i will slow drip another 5 gallons of water. It takes about 15-20 mins for the 5 gallons to empty.
-Ive also used a Ross root feeder and watered around the drip line about 12" down in the soil on the weeks that im not slow dripping the 10 gallons of water.
-As of late i havent been able to do this since we've had quite a bit of rain the past 3 weeks and the soil is already moist enough.
-Is there anything else i need to do with these trees?
-I was told that the plant start fertilizer is all i need to use for the first year and after that i can use the Ross Root Feeder and the fertilizer that comes with it. Sound about right?
-Do the concolor fir and norway spruce prefer a moist, wet, or dry soil?
-I havent mulched yet but how far out from the trunk should i add mulch (Drip line, further then the drip line, etc)?
-On the norway spruce i was seeing some of the needles dropping on the lower, internal, and west facing branches. I checked for spider mites and i didnt find any and i noticed that after we started getting these rains the past few weeks that the branches started looking better. Do i chalk it up to a little transplant shock and underwatered?
-Finally, it appeared as if one of the roots was coming out of the ground between where the tree was spaded in and the native soil. The root was 1/8" to 1/4" in diameter and i cut it with a shears as close to the ground as i could. I saw this on the Red Maple and Red Oak which were also spaded in at the same time. Is that pretty common? The tree just trying to work out into the native soil and took the path of least resistence?