Step 2: Dig a Suitable Sized Hole
A properly sized hole can make a huge difference in the survival and successful growth of your plant. The size of the hole depends on the size of the your plant's container or the size of the rootball. Plants that are 3 inches or less should have a hole about 6 to 12 inches deep. For plants with containers greater than 3 inches, dig a hole about twice the diameter of its current pot. For trees, the hole should be at least 3 times the diameter of the rootball.
Basically, you want the hole wide enough so the roots can spread, and deep enough so the crown (where the roots meet the trunk or stem) or top of the rootball is at the soil line. The soil surrounding the roots should be loose to allow for easier growth. Compacted soil makes it harder for the roots to get the oxygen and water they need.
When returning soil back to the planting hole, known as backfilling, fill the hole about halfway and then gently water to help settle the soil. You can also add amendments to the bottom of the planting hole and more as you continue to add more soil to the hole. Finish filling the hole the rest of the way and water again.
If you're planting bulbs this fall, a good rule of thumb is to plant the bulb at a depth of three times the width of the bulb. If you purchased bulbs, you can also check packaging for recommended planting depth. The ProPlugger comes with adjustment rings to easily plant at the right depth and makes filling the hole super easy. Our deluxe soil knife has depth markings on the blade to ensure you have the right depth.
Planting cool-season vegetables? For square foot gardening, check out the Seeding Square. This color-coded tool simplifies the planting process with an easy to use plant-by-color approach. Just follow the included guide to find the right spacing and planting depth for your vegetables. For row planting, the BioGreen Super Seeder Row Planter takes the guesswork out of seed spacing and comes with six interchangeable discs to sow seeds as small as carrots to larger seeds such as beans.