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Moving a 6 year old oak tree

Oxfordshire, United Kingdom Gb

about 6 years ago I noticed an oak had self-seeded in the corner of our kitchen garden but was busy at the time so I kept putting off moving it - 6 years later and its about 8 ft and very bushy so now its cutting out light to the strawberries etc. I can't bear to just cut it down but I don't have the budget to call in experts to move it: is there anything I can do myself to try and transplant it somewhere else? Any advice very gratefully received.



We had one growing in a pot, the difficulty is with a garden, it is going to be a big tree and the root system near yours or anyone elses drains etc need to be avoided, It will cost a lot if it has to be removed as a big tree when it starts to cause trouble. We planted ours at the entrance of the long drive set back so it would not over grow the entrance and 18 years later it is still there performing just as we wanted. Dig a good sized hole to spread the roots out into, take as much soil as you can with it but make sure to tease the roots out evenly and make sure you keep it watered through the Summer. We were lucky enough to have a suitable place for it. If you have not got anywhere then I suggest you ask someone for advise of keeping it in a big tub where its growth will be restricted.

18 May, 2009


You should be able to move it easily but only when it is completely dormant in late autumn or early spring before it has sprouted again. Autumn is best as it will make new roots during the winter period. Just dig it out by trenching on all sides as deep as possible and cutting through the roots, leaving as large a root ball as possible. The number of roots, including fine roots, is more important than moving the earth itself! You will need two or more people to lift it with forks on each side to lift it. You will probably have to water it well during the first season after transplanting if the weather is dry or hot, but as oaks live for hundreds of years, it will have forgotten completely that it was moved after a few years!

18 May, 2009


Are you sure that it is an oak tree? Growth of eight feet in six years sounds rather a lot.

18 May, 2009


Sorry I was a bit careless reading the question and overlooked the 8ft, bit a bit big to put in a pot!!!! But the root problem in a smallish garden is what you want to worry about.

18 May, 2009

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