recently planted Viburnum Coppertop

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danman

New Member
Hello All,

I recently planted(like 2 days ago) some viburnum Coppertop shurbs. I dug my hole out about 2x bigger than my plant, filled it part way up with new soil, added the plant back filled with new soil and then watered. Today they are all wilting. The soil feels damp so I thought things were fine, but the card for the plant says medium water and I was trying not to over do it. Here is a picture of it, any advice?? I feel like I need to water it a lot more, but I also wanted some 2nd opinions.
20210412_192419.jpg
 

luis_pr

New Member
Before planting, I would have acclimated the plant if it is now in full sun. It may be suffering from transplant shock from coddled conditions at the plant nursery/wholesaler. You did not say where you are so it may also be warm, dry & windy outside and that makes the leaves lose moisture faster than its still small root system can absorb more water. Because it is a new plant, I would concentrate a lot of the water near the base of the plant, basically, in the area that is the width of the plastic container that it was sold in. That area is where the roots are right now. Then water further outside of that so new roots growing in the soil chase the water there too. Also if you insert a finger into the soil to a depth of 8" in several spots after watering and you detect dry spots, you may have missed a spot or not used enough water. There could also be sunlight reflected from all the rocks, bright walls and cement surfaces. While it is drought resistant, no new plant will be fine until it first becomes established and the root system grows and spreads looking for water. By the way, is there enough space for the viburnum there? I thought that one got a tad wide, maybe 5-6-7 feet wise. Proceed with watering if the soil feels dry or almost dry. Skip watering it is already moist or soggy. Ratchet up the amount of water when it gets hot.
 

RonsGarden

Super Moderator
Staff member
Question: Did you loosen the root ball before planting?
The plant is possibly root bound and will have difficulty send out roots into the surrounding soil as well as taking moisture out of the surrounding "new" soil you used.
I suggest you dig it the shrub up, check the root ball and gently loosen any/all roots that where confined to the outer edge of the pot. Once this is done you can replant! And yes, it will need a lot of water until the plant settles in!
 

danman

New Member
Thank you Luis and RonsGaden. It is in full sun and I am in North Houston. I did loosen the root ball before I placed it in it's hole. Last night, I did go out and water the base throughly, b/c I pulled some more soil away from the base and it was clear I did not water it in enough. I gave them a decent soaking and this morning it's like they are new plants. lol. My other question is when it says "Medium water" How do you guage that? Is that just damp? Not soaked?
 

luis_pr

New Member
Oh, man! There is no good answer for that. The wholesaler that wrote the plant label used its own definition, which may differ from the next plant wholesaler and so forth. I personally take it as a hint and water the plants more often or larger amounts of water than I would use for cacti, succulents (plants that require excellent draining potting mix when planted in containers). Thus, I will water Medium-ly as soon as the soil feels almost dry (or dry) to the touch. Another phrase like that is "keep it on the dry side". Hee, hee, hee. Person 1 keeps it dry for a few days. Person 2 keeps it dry for weeks. Etc. Oh, well.
 

RonsGarden

Super Moderator
Staff member
One of my favourite sayings whenever I find an issue, or problem with any particular plant is to Keep-It-Simple-Stupid (K-I-S-S).
I always get questions about watering.....and have to probe with questions to find the problem.
I would suggest to dig a shallow trench around the plant ( a good foot or more from the trunk) and a couple of inches deep, then pour water in the trench, and then wait for the water to be absorbed. Apply more water until the soil stops absorbing. It will take time for this to happen. Each type of soil is different in composition so it may take up to several hours until the soil is up to capacity and down deep enough.
 


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