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Bare root tree purchase? Decent size and price?

 
Posts: 2
Location: Nebraska
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I have always ordered from Lawyer Nursery for my bareroot needs, specifically the evergreens and shrubs.  Spruce, Pine, Cedar trees - Cotoneaster, Cranberry, Blackberry, etc shrubs.

Every site I go to that has these trees, only have tiny trees available.  Lawyer use to have 2' - 3' and 3' - 4' all the time on different trees/shrubs. Now I am lucky to find 18" spruce trees. I need the tree to be large enough to have good root structure. And I am having a hard time.  Has anyone found replacements for Lawyer? Are there any sites I can visit that do offer shipping of bare root?
 
pollinator
Posts: 2036
Location: Zone 5 Wyoming
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One Green World has large trees with well established root balls. About 4' trees and the roots are extensive.

Stark Bros has 3-4' trees but they trim the roots back pretty extensively (as well as the tree branches).

I buy from both. One Green World is my favorite but it's much more expensive.
 
Nicholas Cts
Posts: 2
Location: Nebraska
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It looks like One Green World only had fruit and nut trees, none of the shrubs or trees I mentioned come up on their search. Stark Bros has more options for trees but none of the evergreens unfortunately. Am I missing something on them? I'm sure most folks here are only interested in fruit and nut trees but I am trying to work on establishing durable windbreaks and privacy screens for all seasons before moving inward with fruits. :D
 
elle sagenev
pollinator
Posts: 2036
Location: Zone 5 Wyoming
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Ah. Evergreen only. Good question. I've never bought any. lol
 
gardener
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It might sound a bit counter-intuitive, but with bare root trees, smaller is usually better if you want a good root structure.

The concern is not how large the root structure is, but rather, the ratio of root to shoot.  By necessity, the nursery will need to trim back the roots a bit when they pull them from the ground.  The very fine feeder roots usually break off, and the larger ones are trimmed back so that they'll fit into the bag with the wet sawdust.  So a smaller tree will have a greater % of roots in comparison to the rest of the tree.  A larger tree, while it may look like it's got a larger root mass, may not have an adequate root system to the bio-mass that remains above ground.

The other thing you'll notice with a bare root tree is that as the roots are trimmed to clean up any broken roots and to help it fit into the bag, they also trim back the branches to balance the root to shoot ratio.  So what are you paying extra for?  All the pruning just stunts the tree and forces it to use limited energy to seal off those cuts/wounds, rather than immediately pushing that energy upward toward new growth.  Yes, the trunk will be thicker, but that doesn't mean that the tree will grow any faster.  

Smaller is better, in most instances.  But you're going to have to be attentive to it for the first year until it's established.
 
master pollinator
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Have you tried Western Maine Nursery in Fryeburg Maine?

I planted 12 acres of field into trees with their bare root stock in 1994 with great results.

 
Posts: 89
Location: Missouri Ozarks
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http://nursery.iowadnr.gov/Evergreens-_c_11.html

They have three size groups with the largest being 12-30" for 80 cents each - min quantity is 25.

They've got Norway and White Spruce but are out of stock on 21-30 Norway and all sizes for White. I think Spring is when they're better stocked for evergreens.
 
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