Asked on Dec 23, 2011

When to transplant elderberry tree

Vicki MannDouglas HuntGarden Rebel / Sims Landscaping, Co.


I have a 10' tall elderberry tree in Jacksonville, FL that needs to be moved. In past years the tree went into dormancy this time of year but La Nina conditions have us with very warm temps and the elder is lush and full.
Should I wait for a cold trend or proceed now with transplanting?
4 answers
  • Erica Glasener
    on Dec 23, 2011

    I would wait until it is dormant to move it or right before it starts putting out new growth in early spring so that you can cut it back and it will recover quickly.

  • Yes,that is a pretty large plant and your odds of survival go up if you wait for dormancy. All of the other rules of after care still apply,don't plant too deep, plant straight, and build a dam around the plant so you can flood it. Of course, it is critical to get a rootball and this one will be heavy so get help so you don't get hurt.

  • Douglas Hunt
    on Dec 24, 2011

    I am in complete agreement. While it may seem like we are not going to have any cold weather this season, it will come, your tree will respond appropriately and that is your clue to act.

  • Vicki Mann
    on Jan 31, 2016

    Start now creating a root ball for the tree it will make it much easier to move when it goes dormant. First use a shovel to cut straight down 18 inches from the tree trunk. Circle the trunk with the cuts. Do this every 2-3 weeks, always in the same place. The cuts will force the tree to form small feeder roots.After 9-12 weeks it will have enough of a root ball and will reduce your transplanting shock. It will also make it easier to dig the tree up so it is well worth the effort. Once you transplant make sure you water it well for the 1st year.

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