Potted Tree - Brady Nursery - Wichita, KS
Potted Shrubs - Brady Nursery - Wichita, KS
Potted Trees - Brady Nursery - Wichita, KS

Planting & Care Guide for Trees and Shrubs Grown in Pots


Plants in pots add a variety of visual interest to the outside of your home. They can create a lot of curb appeal for your home. Potted trees and shrubs can be used between garage doors, beside a pool, and next to front and back doors. 

PLANTING – Correct planting depth is essential when planting a tree or shrub in a container. Dig the hole 6 to 12 inches wider and one inch deeper than the depth of the container. If planting in heavy clay soil, mix gypsum in the bottom of the hole to loosen soil for root penetration. Gently remove the container, place the plant in the hole and check the depth. The top of your plant’s soil level should be level to ½ inch deeper than the existing soil surface. On larger plants with extensive root systems, carefully make three to five ½ inch deep vertical cuts with a knife. This facilitates root growth into the surrounding soil and prevents the circling of the roots. Backfill your planting hole with three parts soil to one part compost. Form a soil berm or well around the planting hole to create a watering basin.

WATERING – The initial watering is vital to settle the backfilled soil and to moisten the root system. Water thoroughly and tamp the backfilled soil to settle it. Add additional soil if needed. Apply Fertilome Root Stimulator now and then monthly during the first growing season. Watering is extremely important the first year or two. If rain is insufficient, apply one inch of water each week during the summer and increase during very hot weather. Let your hose run slowly at the base of the plant until water has penetrated to root depth. You must check the soil to prevent over-watering. Too much water may be as harmful as too little, especially in heavy clay soil. Check with our sales staff about the specific watering requirements of your selected plant materials.

MULCHING – After the initial watering, mulching is recommended to retain moisture. Mulching also prevents weed growth and controls the soil temperature during the summer and winter months. This promotes vigorous root development and establishment in your landscape.

PRUNING – Pruning is usually not necessary during the first growing season. During subsequent years, spring flowering shrubs should be pruned after they have bloomed. Examples of spring flowering shrubs are Forsythia, Lilac, Spirea, and Viburnums. Summer flowering shrubs should be pruned back in the early spring, before growth begins. Examples of summer flowering shrubs are Buddleia, Crapemyrtle, and Vitex. Other shrubs and evergreens may be pruned in the spring or summer to maintain the desired shape.

FERTILIZING – Use Fertilome Root Stimulator monthly during the first growing season. After the first season, use Fertilome Tree and Shrub Food as recommended. Always water well after using Fertilome Tree and Shrub Food.

SPRAYING – If insect or disease problems are suspected, bring in samples of the injury or pest to the nursery. Our experts can help identify the problem and provide the recommended treatment.