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West Virginia Guide to Growing Trees

Growing trees is a popular hobby among people in West Virginia. Whether you're looking to start a new tree farm or just want to learn more about the process, this guide will help you get started! Trees in West Virginia

The Best Flowering Trees to Grow in West Virginia

Carolina Sweetheart Redbud

Delivering the timeless aesthetic of mature trees with a fresh new perspective, the Carolina Sweetheart Redbud Tree is in a class all its own. Unlike its more well-known relatives, the Eastern Redbud and the Freeman Oak, it offers you beautiful colors that will instantly transform your lawn into an oasis of nature’s beauty. Blooming pink flowers greet spring and new leaves are a deep purple. Over time the voluminous foliage transitions to shades of green, white, and hot pink. The Carolina Redbud's bright, dimensional color sets it apart from most other trees. You can place Carolina Redbud in your front yard as the focal point or add it to your garden with others to make an eye-catching display. And when you have a Carolina Sweetheart Redbud, one of just 150 perfect specimens in the world, you'll build your e award-winning landscape.

Planting & Care

Select a location with soil that drains well and benefits from 4 to 6 hours of sunlight. Dig your hole 2x as wide as the root ball, backfill the dirt up into the hole, water gently, then cover with 3-4 inches of mulch. To ensure healthy growth, water your tree 1 or 2 times per week during the first year and continue to monitor watering requirements. After the first year, you can rely on rainfall for moisture purposes. A complete fertilizer like 5-10-5 should be applied in early spring to provide nutrients for the tree. Pruned branches that cross over each other or rub together should be cut off with a saw blade; tree stubs are left behind, and new shoots that grow from the bottom of the trunk can also be removed as long as they are not damaging to the tree.

White Dogwood

White dogwood trees are a beautiful sign of spring and are easy to grow in USDA zones 5-8. Growing up to 20-30 feet tall, these flowering ornamental trees perform well when other springtime counterparts can't due to climate or weather patterns. These trees do well in full sun but prefer dappled shade. They have a beautiful early spring flower show and both red fall leaves and bright red winter berries that attract wildlife. Grow May-June flowers from this tree. These flowers are enveloped in dark green leaves, and their deep red color creates a seasonally changing sight that changes month by month. These trees may be small, however, they are versatile. It's perfect both as the focal point in your garden and as a border in your yard. Moreover, it still blooms beautifully even when surrounded by other trees.

Planting & Care

Choose a planting site for your dogwood that is in either full or filtered shade and has moist, fertile soil with 5.5 pH levels. When planting a Dogwood tree in Indiana, make sure to keep the root ball and top of the trunk at or below ground level. Use soil from your original location for filling in around the hole that you dug. Make an effort to distribute roots evenly while raking out any air pockets with dirt. Fill up some space between stones with mulch but leave room for water to accumulate so it doesn't evaporate away quickly. Dogwood trees are highly sensitive to overwatering or neglect, with leaves drooping when watered too much and green excess indicates a need for more water. If you fertilize at all, get it in early spring rather than waiting for the late summer months. In the first year, don't allow weeds or grasses to be within 2-3 feet of your dogwood. Pull the weeds initially and use a growing mat (or mulch) and then insulate its roots 2-4 inches thick with straw at least twice a month. Do not spray Roundup around young trees and ensure that wind doesn't blow chemical drift onto your tree. The best defense against any pest or disease issue is a healthy tree. Good soil, proper feeding & healthy watering habits are vital to the prosperity of your tree. If deer become an issue for your dogwood trees, consider caging them. Although there is a whole host of deer deterrents available, nothing will guarantee protection like caging will. Late fall will kick your dogwood tree into its dormant state. This means there’s still time to grow trees this winter.

The Best Shade Trees in West Virginia

Purple Fountain Weeping Beech Tree

The Purple Fountain Weeping Beech sports dark purple foliage that cascades in a hanging shape to create an eye-catching, one-of-a-kind focal point for your landscape. This weeping tree offers unmatched colors in a natural form that does not require frequent pruning. Strong and durable, this upright tree has slow growth for optimal flowering. As fall transitions, watch the show begin with planting your Purple Fountain. If you live in Massachusetts and want a tree that thrives in extreme weather conditions, these Purple Fountain Weeping Beech trees are perfect for your landscape. These tenured trees will make your yard beautiful, while also attracting even the most elusive wildlife.

Planting & Care

To grow a Purple Fountain Weeping Beech tree, plant it in full sun (6 to 8 hours of sunlight daily) and well-drained soil. Dig a hole three times larger than the root ball. Place your tree in the hole, backfill the soil and water to settle. In your first few years of growing, water their roots as necessary. After your tree is established, water during periods where there's little to no rainfall. Your Beech trees do not require pruning and can be trimmed in the dormant season.

Cardinal Red Maple Tree

If you’re looking for a maple tree that displays deep autumn colors, the Cardinal Red Maple is a great option. The fall show will dazzle you with bright red-orange and maroon colors. However, fall isn’t the only time you can enjoy the color of red on new leaves. New growth in early spring starts red and changes to deep green over months. The red color of this maple stems not just from its leaves but the whole tree. With carefree growth, soil adaptability, and versatility in zones 4 to 8, the Cardinal Red Maple is a great addition to any yard.

Planting & Care

The Cardinal Maple tree is versatile enough to thrive in full sun or partial shade and can also tolerate most soil types. Plant with an incision twice as wide at the root ball, though just as deep. Mulch around the canopy for optimal water retention and away from where power lines, structures, sidewalks, and sewer lines are present to avoid projecting roots. Be sure to water the tree every week, during its youth, and if you live in an area with frequent droughts. Pruning the weaker branches is one important step to keep trees looking healthy and strong. To avoid breakage during a storm or other event that can compromise the strength of your tree's limbs, prune more readily than you might normally would while also trimming away any diseased or dead branches.

The Best Fruit Trees in West Virginia

North Star Cherry

The North Star Cherry Tree was introduced by the University of Minnesota in 1950. It is bred for fast production of cherries and cold hardiness, with plump, tart cherries that are ideal for snacking directly from the tree or baking. This self-fertile tree is both small and easy to adapt to, which means it’s perfect for any landscape. It can also produce fruit naturally on its own so more of these trees will provide even more flowers and fruits.

Planting & Care

To grow the North Star tree successfully, it needs a lot of sunlight and well-drained soil. Dig three times the width of the root ball into your ground to set it down before covering it with mulch for moisture conservation. If your tree has received at least an inch of rain every 10 days, then no additional watering is necessary. If a season is hot and dry and receiving rainfall isn’t enough, water by using a slow trickle garden hose running near the base of the tree. The simplest way to check if it's time to water is by digging a 2-3 inch hole in the ground. If there's no moisture, then you should water your tree. Prune winter after the first year and as necessary to remove weak branches, prune once a year for height management. Apply nitrogen fertilizer in the spring and midsummer twice per annum, 2 weeks apart. Fertilize your tree at a maximum rate of 10-10-10 - rates depend on the formulation, so always follow package directions. The application should be 6 to 8 inches away from the trunk and shouldn’t happen after mid-summer in colder climates.

Heritage Everbearing Raspberry Plant

Heritage Everbearing Raspberry bushes are a recently developed raspberry bush, bred for huge and delicious berries that can endure drought or disease. Heritage does not rely on harsh chemicals but instead thrives in temperate climates with one growing year. The heritage everbearing raspberry is a strong and hardy plant, which thrives in most soil types and even tolerates cold climates. It is perfect for beginners as well as expert gardeners alike. Heritage is an ornamental variety that grows well in the ground or a container, tolerates cold down to -20 degrees, and thrives as drought tolerant once established. With Heritage, you don’t need a green thumb to enjoy fresh berries from summer through winter. Raspberries that are of the highest quality now come from your backyard!

Planting & Care

Plant your Heritage tree in a location that has plenty of suns and well-drained soil. Dig a hole that is at least 2 times the size of its pot and backfill with fresh, organic soil to settle the roots. Plants planted in a container should not have drainage holes, as they do not provide enough water for the plant’s roots. Make sure you water your raspberry plant weekly, checking the top 2 inches of soil for dryness. Prune it in the fall and make sure to cut any sideways-growing canes.

When is The Best Time to Plant Trees in West Virginia

We recommend planting when soil temperatures are between 40 and 60 degrees Fahrenheit. During early spring, around April or May, there will be a high amount of sap flow from the tree because it is readying itself for new growth. Sap flows more slowly during the winter months since the tree needs less water at this time (since leaves have fallen off). The last recommended planting season would be fall, October through December. This ensures that any root systems established during these months will survive cold winters with minimal damage done by frost.

Can You Plant All Season Long?

Yes! As long as there is a break from the cold, we can still get in some planting time. The best times for planting are January and February when days start to warm up again after winter has passed. In March, April, and May it gets too hot outside during the day so this is not recommended unless your area has very different weather patterns than ours does. Once summer starts creeping around - that's when it becomes difficult to find any good windows of opportunity for outdoor work because of high humidity levels which make everything grow at an accelerated rate (including weeds).

What are The Best Trees to Plant Each Season in West Virginia

Springtime

Plant trees like tulip, dogwood, and poplar. These trees should be planted in the early spring.

Summertime

Plant trees like oak, holly, and crabapple. These need to be planted in late summer so they have time to grow before winter.

Fall time

Plant trees like oak and honey locusts.

Wintertime

Plant evergreen trees such as junipers or pines.

What Trees Have The Least Invasive Roots in West Virginia

The least invasive trees in West Virginia are Pine trees and Red Maple. These trees have more shallow root systems so they don't go deep in the soil or move around as much, but do not grow too close together because they will compete for nutrients. They also need plenty of suns which are available on slopes where there has been some erosion from wind or water. If these areas were recently cleared then you should wait until next year before planting your new tree out here because studies show it takes at least one year after clearing an area for all of the compaction to settle down and provide good growing conditions again.