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Fall is the best time to plant Japanese maples, red maples, pines, evergreens, and fruit trees.

When is the Best Time of Year to Plant Trees? (Evergreens, Maples and Fruit Trees)

October 6, 2016
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We so wish we could say that the best time to plant a tree is all the time! After all, doesn’t the world need more trees?

Not only are they inspiring to look at, but trees also do a lot of good. They remove pollution from the air, reduce heating costs up by 20 to 50 percent and lower stress levels.

To maximize the benefits of trees, set them up for success by planting them at the right time of year. Learn the best time of year to plant all different types of trees below!

Best Time of Year to Plant Trees Like Pines, Maples, Fruit Trees and More

Generally, when is the best time of year to plant trees?

Fall is often considered the best time of year to plant new trees. Generally, late August, September and October are the best months.

It all depends, though, on when it actually feels like fall. As long as the hottest days of summer are gone and the ground isn’t frozen yet, you can still plant trees.

Is fall the best time to plant trees in all states, like Colorado, Ohio, Texas and Utah? Or when I should plant trees in different zones (zone 5, 6, 7 and more)?

For most states and zones (including the ones mentioned above), fall really is a fantastic time to add a tree to your yard!

Of course, while that’s a great rule of thumb, there are a handful of exceptions. The below states play by their own rules. And again, if your state isn’t mentioned below, go ahead, and plant a tree this fall!  

  • Alabama: Fall is okay, but winter (November through March) is even better.
  • California: Fall through winter will set your trees up for success.
  • Florida: Planting in the rainy season from May to October is smart. But you can probably plant any time of year. Lucky you!
  • Georgia: Late fall or even winter will work. November and December are perfect.
  • Hawaii: Go for the rainy season (November through March).
  • Louisiana: Expand your home’s forest in November or December.
  • Tennessee: Autumn (and early winter) are best.

Why should I plant a tree in fall?

There’s less chance of drought or sun scorch harming fragile, newly-planted trees. Plus, the cooler temperatures help encourage new root growth. And this effect is compounded. Since trees focus on growing new roots in fall, planting new trees now helps them develop more, stronger roots.

“The more time the tree has to establish roots, the more quickly the tree will grow and the better life it will have overall,” said Davey’s R.J. Laverne in a recent Parade article.

Is fall the best time to plant all trees? What about maples? Evergreens? Fruit trees?

While fall is a great time for planting trees, we’re breaking down the best time of year to plant all different types and species of trees below.

Also, a good rule is to plant at least four to six weeks before either the extreme conditions of winter or summer are expected to arrive in your area.

When is the best time to plant…

Maple trees (Japanese maple, red maple, and more)? Plant these in fall.

Birch, dogwood, willow or magnolia trees? Since these need more time to establish, plant in spring, and make sure to properly water throughout the summer.

Pine trees or evergreens? Because evergreen trees don’t go dormant, you can plant in fall or spring – as long as the weather isn’t hot.

Fruit trees? If you experience winter, plant trees in early spring to avoid winter damage. If your area has a mild or warm winter, plant in fall.

Learn the best way to plant these different types of trees.

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