The fun of growing vegetables, flowers, shrubs and trees from seeds and cuttings is so rewarding. But, plant transplant shock can ruin all these fun, when plants don’t grow or show the same vigor.
Transplant shock is a term that refers to a number of stresses occurring in recently transplanted trees and shrubs. It involves failure of the plant to root well, consequently the plant becomes poorly established in the landscape.
Symptoms of transplant shocks;
- Premature defoliation
- Fade of leaf color
- Withering of leaves
- Susceptibility to the pest and disease
- Limited stem growth and stunting
- Canopy thinning
- Tip burn
- Delayed leaf emergence in spring
Causes for the transplant shock
Poor plant material
Even though there are many reason for transplant shock, the core point stand on selection of seedling. If in case we select seedling having poor root ball, it is not able to support the optimal canopy for the plant in its vegetative stage. Likewise if you select seedling with damaged root it gets poor immune system as it can’t supply a proper nutrient and water, resulting in susceptibility of plant to pest and disease.
Undesirable growing site
Sometime we people choose the wrong site for planting, for example if we place the plant in soil having poor drainage the root gets decay. We must know the suitability of plant also. As per the photoperiodism some plant loves long sunny hours and others compatible with shade environment. Regardless of plant habit if we sow the seeds the end result will be zero.
Poor transplant techniques
When you assure good seedling and well suited growing site you may commit wrong transplanting procedure. While doing transplant some points like, time of transplant, age of plant, depth of of pit, care about the seedling needs to keep in mind. Sometime after the purchase of the plant if we do the delay in transplanting, there may chances of drying of root balls.
Poor follow-up cultural practices
Once after transplanting, regular follow –up need to be there. A transplanted plant start to adjusting with new environment at that time it face number of challenges like pest, biotic and abiotic stress. At that time if we ignore the plant care practices there is more chance of losing a plant.
How to overcome transplanting shock….,
Purchase of healthy seedling.
Before buying plant, choose the best and healthiest ones. Avoid the plant that looks like, damaged one, suffering from pest, diseases or other issues. This increases the chances of having a successful process as healthy plants are more likely to survive a transplant shock. When you buy a struggling plant and transplant it, you only add stress to an already stressed plant.
Consider the concept like when, where at what age, to Transplant
Generally transplanting has to be done in cool weather either in morning or evening as it reduces the heat stress on plant. Early seedling stage of the plant get easily adjusted to the new environment than of transplanting of a well grown plant as its removal damage the root while uprooting, so avoid the transplanting of well grown plant. Attempt to do transplanting according to their growth habit example as creeper needs long period of sunlight place plant in area receiving more sunlight. Consider the amount of sun, soil drainage, soil type and quality. Then plant it using proper planting techniques appropriately.
Try Not To Disturb Roots
When you dig or move the plants, you will probably have to bother the root system a bit, as it minimizes the impact of transplant shock as much as possible. Try to keep the root system intact and don’t shake out the soil when moving the plant. Also, make sure the root ball remains moist. If the roots become totally dry, the roots die and the whole plant dies.
Take As Many Roots As Possible
As we mentioned earlier, the tiny roots at the farthest end of the root ball are the most necessary ones to the plant’s health and growth.
The more healthy roots you bring along when you move the trees or plants, the lesser chance of transplant shock to occur and the more likely it will survive.
How long does transplant shock last?
The length of time will vary from plant to plant and for trees, transplant shock recovery time could last years.
Water Plants Carefully
Plants need water to survive, so give them plenty of watering immediately after moving especially young plants. After transplanting, the plant’s root system will experience some “damage” and need to recover. Watering makes a very important step to increase the defense of your plants or trees against transplant shock. Water plants and trees immediately afterwards, considering their watering needs.
Fertilize With Root Boosters
Provide extra care to transplanted plant
Sometimes newly transplanted material is attacked by pests and insects. A plant in shock doesn’t need the extra stress pest delivery. Keep a careful eye on your transplanted plants; be ready to help your plants as it to take a good start in its new location.
Key words: seedling, transplanting, pest, root, poor drainage, nutrient, shock, pit size, care and management, root ball.