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Media for tree storage

 
pollinator
Posts: 211
Location: Mason Cty, WA
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Burnt Ridge Orchards in WA keeps their nursery stock, largely exposed, in alder sawdust for easy transplantation and stress-free storage.

Has anyone experimented with keeping trees out in the open, in trenches in different media?

I know I could easily get a quantity of peat moss from a local supplier, but I don't know how it would compare to the officially-approved alder sawdust, which has to be delivered from further. And I don't know what I would do with the peat moss to do penance for the devilment that arises from using peat moss.  
 
steward
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Location: Northern WI (zone 4)
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Are they bare root trees that they are just keeping in sawdust until they sell in spring?  Or are they living in the sawdust through the summer?

I wonder if alder is critical or if any sawdust would work?
 
Posts: 95
Location: Eastern Great Lakes lowlands, zone 4/5
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Reminds me of a Missouri gravel bed a little bit. I don't think I've seen trees growing in only saw dust though. Hugelkulture and soil with a ton of fluffy organic matter, or very sandy soil, I've seen - being very well drained is probably a key quality of baby tree growing medium
 
master pollinator
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I have put bare root trees in trenches with wet newspaper covering their roots. If their roots get dry, they tend to die.
 
Fredy Perlman
pollinator
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Mike -- keeping them until ready to plant out or sell. They could be in there up to a year. The idea being that if they grow any, it's minimally traumatizing to uproot them. I'm sure you would want, at the very least, a deciduous sawdust. I'm supposing alder is great because of its high nitrogen and quick rotting. Burnt Ridge said they buy 40 cubic yards at a time, yikes.

R Spencer, what's a MO gravel bed? And i thought growing trees on hugels was a bad idea?

Travis, were your wet newspaper trenches in the sun? I have had experiences such that I'm reluctant to rely on newspaper any more. Too hard to tell quickly by eye if things are drying out.

 
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