How to Plant

A quick and easy guide on how to plant a tree in 10 steps!

“Planting for Life”

You will need (your local garden centre will advise you about):

  • 10 native or common Irish trees, five-to-seven year old – see full list of tree types on website.

  • 10 strong wooden stakes, 5-foot high each 

  • Several sturdy garden shovels / spades

  • (2) x 50 litre bags of soil conditioner

  • 10 rubber “tree-ties”

  • 1 sledgehammer

  • 5 plastic sheets e.g. large black plastic refuse sacks.

  • 10 rabbit-guards 

  • 1 sweeping brush. 

  • 1 sharp knife/scissors 

  • 1 wheelbarrow.

  • 1 screwdriver

  • 10 medium-sized screws

  • 1 watering can.


  1. Pick a suitable place to plant the trees 7 square metres.

  2. Dig a holes (cut out and lift grass sod onto the plastic sheeting – dig further (deep enough to fit the tree-roots – if you’re planting a “potted” tree dig slightly deeper than the height of  the pot.  Put the dug-up soil onto the plastic sheeting.

  3. Use the sledgehammer to drive a stake into the hole – for single stem trees only – no need for a stake for “feathered” (multiple-stem) trees or shrubs. Put the stake at the side of the hole which is between the tree and the main direction of the wind.

  4. Put the grass sod pieces, upside down, back into the bottom of the hole, loose enough to give the roots room to take hold.

  5. Place the tree root into the hole (use the knife to cut off any root-netting).

  6. Put the loose soil back into the hole, holding the tree upright, parallel and close to the stake.

  7. Tie the tree to the stake with a tree-tie, using a figure-of-eight,  (high enough, and close enough to the stem, to let the tree move freely in the wind and the roots to settle in, without the stem breaking). Where needed, screw the tree-tie to the stake at the correct height, to stop it slipping down.

  8. Scoop the rest of the soil back loosely into the hole from the plastic covering, after removing any big stones. Spread a layer of soil conditioner onto the soil around the base of the tree.

  9. Wrap a rabbit-guard around the base. Water the soil around the base (a full watering can per tree).

  10. Repeat with each of the other nine trees!