1 After receiving thousands of bare root tree cuttings, the outdoor grounds crew began potting each seedling, so they could be carefully nurtured before moving to a more permanent location.
2 For this part of the project, we needed more than three-thousand pots.
3 All the trees were organized by their bundles. Each bundle includes 25, 50 or 100 bare root cuttings. Healthy bare root trees get off to a more vigorous start because their abundant, fibrous roots have already had a chance to develop unrestricted. These cuttings came from JLPN. https://jlpnliners.com
4 We used what I call our "black gold" composted manure. Composting manure above 131-degrees Fahrenheit for at least a couple weeks will kill harmful pathogens, dilute ammonia, stabilize nitrogen, kill weed seeds and reduce objectionable odors.
5 This "black gold" is made right here at my farm, and used for all my garden beds.
6 In order to get all the seedlings potted as quickly as possible, it was "all hands on deck." The crew created a very productive assembly line.
7 Each bundle was set aside with the appropriate number of pots.
8 Each pot was laid out ready to be filled. The trees will only remain in these pots temporarily - eventually, they will all be transplanted into the woodland, where they can thrive.
9 Here, Chhiring filled each pot about a third full of "black gold."
10 The pots are then lined up to receive one bare root tree cutting each.
11 There were many different kinds of trees. These bare root cuttings range from a foot tall to about three feet tall. Bare root plants are dormant perennials that are dug up and stored without any soil around their roots.
12 Bare root plants should not have any mold or mildew. The cuttings should also feel heavy. If they feel light and dried out then the plant probably will not grow.
13 And, be sure to plant bare roots before new growth starts.
14 Wilmer plants the seedling into each pot. If they are in good condition, the plant should sprout leaves in the same year it is planted. If planted in spring, a bare root plant should have leaves by the summer.
15 The tree is placed at the same level it was grown by the nursery - where the roots start and the top shoots begin.
The soil is then gently filled in around the roots, but not packed too tightly.
16 The important thing is to keep the soil moist.
17 Meanwhile, Ryan labels each pot for easy identification.
18 This pot is for one Ginkgo Biloba tree cutting. Although ginkgos grow the world over, some of the oldest specimens are found in South Korea, Japan, and in China, where there is one that is reported to be more than three-thousand years old.
19 All the potted seedlings are then grouped together, so they can be moved to a designated location, where they will be maintained until they're transplanted into the ground.
20 Here are the potted trees as they're loaded onto the truck.
21 Pete and Wilmer continue to pot the young trees.
22 And, as the day progresses, hundreds of root cuttings are potted.
23 Wilmer stopped for a quick snapshot.
24 The trees were placed on the gravel parking lot in front of my main greenhouse - all neatly organized and identified.
25 Ryan uses large markers to label sections of trees.
26 Here are 50-smokebush trees. These trees are known for its large billowing summer blooms that have a puffy cloud-like or "smoky" appearance. I have many of these at the farm.
27 Another 50 - these are heritage river birch trees. The river birch naturally grows along river banks. But as a landscape tree, it can be planted almost anywhere in the U.S. The species is valued for its relatively rapid growth, tolerance of wetness and some drought, and unique curling bark.
28 Some of the larger bare root tree cuttings were kept in bundles and temporarily planted in an established garden bed next to our growing tulips. This allows them to be in good soil until they can be planted directly into the woodland.
29 The goal in handling bare root plants is to maintain adequate moisture so they don't dry out.
30 I am looking so forward to seeing all these trees thrive in the woodland.