When I plant my new tree, do I need to stake it?

Trees for Energy Conservation April 27, 2016 Print Friendly and PDF

When properly planted, high-quality nursery trees should not require staking, unless severe site conditions make them vulnerable to uprooting or injury. Trees transplanted to steep slopes or windy sites may require staking to keep them from uprooting. Trees in high-use areas where vandalism, animal injury, or machinery injury are threats may also require staking to provide physical protection.


Proper staking should not damage the tree trunk and should be placed low enough on the trunk to allow the tree to sway. In most cases, staking material should be removed after one growing season. Slow-growing species or areas with short growing seasons may require two seasons for adequate root development to keep the tree upright.

In all cases, staking material should be periodically inspected to ensure that it is not injuring the tree and is properly tensioned to provide the intended support and protection.

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This work is supported by the USDA National Institute of Food and Agriculture, New Technologies for Ag Extension project.