Trees or Sod First

Posted by Arica Harrison on 5/11/2018

trees_first_blog_pic

This is the time that we are looking to revamp our yards and start big landscaping projects. And, most people think that they need to start with the sod and work up. Well, there’s a better way. Trees first, before sod! Sure, you might be tired of looking at dirt or patchy grass, wishing to see greenness wherever you look. But trees and plants are the key component to creating the desired feel and flow of a landscape. By starting the overhaul of your yard off right, the completed project you envisioned can come together quickly and with much less heartache.

First off, let’s talk about softscaping and hardscaping, two important terms in this landscaping process. Softscaping is all the trees, shrubs, plants, and flowers. Hardscaping is the more structural elements like pavers, rocks, and cement. For a great landscaping design, you need both softscaping and hardscaping.

So, when we say, trees first before sod, we mean softscaping before hardscaping. Natural before structural.  While sod is technically a natural item, think of it more as a permanent element, like you would a patio. If you wanted a patio around a large tree, you wouldn’t build the patio first then cut a whole and plant a tree in the middle. No. You would plant the tree first then build the patio around it. That is what it is like with sod and trees. There will be more work and potential heartaches if you lay sod down then decide to add trees and plants. If the sod goes down first, you will have to dig up portions where you want the tree, potentially damaging surrounding sod. And, if you need a crane or other equipment to bring in a large specimen tree, that could create ruts and more damage to your sod. So, why not bypass all those issues and plant trees first, then lay sod around them. No mess, no stress!

When new trees are planted into your yard, a Moon Valley Nursery professional planting crew will have to create a well around your tree to guarantee healthy growth. Why is that? The reason is because our boxed trees are grown in certain soil that will decompose after some time, and the tree will settle down about an inch. The well also helps hold water for the newly planted tree and then backfills the soil naturally. If the well is dug into the sod, there is the great possibility of the sod dying all around the area of the well. But, if the tree was planted first, you can lay the sod all the way up to the well with no dying patches. 

A bonus with planting trees first with Moon Valley Nurseries, you can get our Soil & Water Conditioner to help prep the soil for sod. The fertilizer will help balance out the salt levels and the Ph of the soil. It will make your normal watering and fertilizing of the new sod go further.

Visit your nearest Moon Valley Nursery location to start your yard revamp off right, with trees first!

Topics: Insider, Expert, Industry Expert, knowledge base

Welcome to the Moon Valley Nursery blog! Your place for landscaping news and ideas, garden inspiration, and tips from our nursery experts.

Subscribe to Email Updates

Recent Posts

Follow Me