Planting Trees and Bulbs in Frozen Ground

edlincoln(6A)December 27, 2013

Everyone says you can plant trees and certain bulbs until the ground freezes. Is this limit because of the difficulty of planting things in frozen soil, or is planting things in frozen soil bad for the plants? What happens if you manage to plant a tree or bulb in frozen soil? The dirt from the pot just sort of stayed together in a solid lump, and the soil I planted it in was sort of in chunks.

My concern is really that I don't have a good place to store the saplings or bulbs until Spring, and question my ability to store them properly. Will the trees survive in this condition better or worse then they would on the deck? Would the bulbs survive this treatment better or worse then they would survive in my apartment?

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As for the bulbs, I've planted them in nearly frozen ground and they've been just fine come spring. I feel they'll fare better out there than inside.

As for plants in containers, if too late to plant, you can safely overwinter in their containers if protected from repeated freezing and thawing. I usually sink the pots into the soft earth of my winter-vacant vegetable garden, or bunch them together and cover with a generous layer of leaves - shredded or not. That being said, last winter we had so much to do after Sandy ripped through, that we didn't get a variety of small trees, shrubs and herbaceous perennials into the ground or mulched and, to my surprise and delight, not a single plant perished. However, I don't recommend that practice.

    Bookmark   December 28, 2013 at 1:36PM
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