replanting shrubs in summer

I just got some shrubs from a guy that wants them removed. They have been planted about 5yrs ago. I want to replant them.I was thinking about putting topsoil or potting soil in the holes before I plants them. They will be dug out with a backhole so the roots should all be in tack.So do you think they will grow alright doing it this way.I know in july its kinda late to plant them. Romy
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If the shrubs are free and they have to come out now, then there is no choice and you have little to lose. I believe that the consensus is that it is best not to amend the soil in the planting holes. Improving the soil in the hole discourages the shrub from sending roots into the native soil. If you have heavy clay soil, you can create a bathtub by amending the soil. The hole will fill with water and the roots will rot. Been there, done that. I would just dig a good size hole and plant the shrubs so that are just a bit above the level they were originally planted. The soil will settle over time and they will end up even with the surrounding grade. Back-fill with native soil about half way and water well to settle the soil and eliminate voids. Complete the back fill and water in. Keep the plants evenly watered for the rest of the year. If they are in full sun and are wilting, you can use some fabric to shade them until they are established.
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Good advice. Even if he loses one or two, the effort is worth it.
Bob S.
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Just dig holes about two times the size of the root ball and make the sides of the hole jagged, not smooth. If you leave them smooth, the roots will girdle around and around in that hole and not enter the soil outside the hole. Down the line you will have problems. Also, do not amend the soil, but put a layer of compost and on top of compost, a layer of mulch. You are going to have to hand water these shrubs for about a month or so till they sort of establish, but keep in mind, in many parts of the US, plants go dormant in dead of summer. They still grow roots, but they tops are dormant in very hot regions.
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What kind of shrub and what zone are you in?
Who's going to dig them out? In most case, the effort isn't worth it. It's cheaper and easier to buy a small one from nursery.
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What's cheaper than free? And what better feeling than to be the savior of unwanted, but perfectly good shrubbery?
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snipped-for-privacy@yahoo.com (Karen) wrote:

I transplanted five rhododendrons that were 25 years old by hand, by wheelbarrow . Did not have to travel more than 200 yards. BUT they all made it. We are talking 20 foot high.
William(Bill)
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Zone 5 S Jersey USA Shade
There is atleast one word misspelled deliberately in the above post
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