If you're lucky enough to own a hunting property or manage your land for wildlife, you've likely considered planting trees or shrubs to benefit the wildlife. Before you get started, it's important to do an inventory of your property. Take note of the dominant trees and shrubs, and what is missing. This will help you decide what type of habitat you want to create.
Different plant species have different uses for wildlife, so if you primarily hunt deer, focus on planting trees and shrubs that benefit white-tailed deer. If you hunt mainly turkeys and grouse, focus on plants for them. You can also mix and match them to benefit most species of wildlife. When planting trees, spacing is an important consideration.
For most shrubs, a spacing of 2-3 feet is recommended. For small trees, a spacing of 10-15 feet is recommended. For larger trees, a spacing of 20-30 feet is recommended. When considering the basic design, groups or blocks of habitat are generally preferred to long, narrow strips.
Habitat blocks offer a variety of site conditions and a greater chance for wildlife to find the niche it needs. Inadequate planting techniques can cause tree mortality in managed landscapes. To ensure the health of your plants, it's important to follow the accepted practices that govern the size and shape of the planting hole, the nature of the filling mix, pruning at the time of planting, and the lining of trees. It's also important to leave as much foliage as possible on the tree, as carbohydrates and other products produced by photosynthesis in the leaves are necessary for the regeneration and development of the root system.
One of the most common mistakes when planting trees is that the root ball is planted too deep or too high. After planting trees and shrubs, it's essential that you don't leave them to let nature take its course. Check with a local nursery or native plant society for suggestions on species and plantings for your area. Ed Gilman long-standing landscape practices were modified or changed to improve the overall health of plants in the managed landscape environment.
Cherry and plum trees provide berries in late summer, which nourish migratory birds during their travels, and tent caterpillars that are attracted to these trees feed both birds and bats. To properly plant trees and shrubs (especially plant material in the form of balls and burlap (B&B), but also in containers), start by locating the point where the widening of the trunk begins. If you're looking to create a wildlife plantation that will improve aesthetics, provide habitat for several species, and start a legacy for your children, these tips will help you get started. Do an inventory of your property to determine what type of habitat you want to create, consider spacing when planting trees, follow accepted practices when planting, leave as much foliage as possible on the tree, check with local nurseries or native plant societies for suggestions on species and plantings for your area, and properly plant trees and shrubs using balls and burlap (B&B) or containers.