The soil I have access to grow in is in a seasonal wet zone, and worry about the plant getting too much water, so approximately how much of the root ball has to be planted in the soil, and how much can I leave under mulch with the plants likely to survive? I'm asking for the safe rule of thumb answer, not the all plants answer.

  • I would ask an other question: which tree/bushes survives on seasonal wet zones. There are many such trees Apr 18, 2019 at 10:59
  • that would be pointed to this question Apr 18, 2019 at 13:55
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    Many trees growths with wet roots. See all trees at bank of a river. I would look such trees near you, and then look for the uses. Maybe not edible, but you may be able to build tools (or basket). Or just use them to block erosion (and maybe to have for compost, and for fire), and help bees and other animals that you need for your garden. Trees: there are many. Edible: I do not remember. Apr 19, 2019 at 14:58

1 Answer 1


How much root ball has to be planted in the soil? Answer, all of it. You should replant trees to the same depth they were growing before they were moved. Deeper or shallower can both cause problems.

Rather than trying to somehow balance your tree on the top of the ground (and hope the first strong wind doesn't blow it down) choose species that like being waterlogged.

In the UK, you could plant willow and alder in the bottom of a river and they would thrive. In fact you often find them growing exactly like that in the wild. The European white birch (Betula pubescens or B. alba, not the "silver birch" B. pendula) won't mind waterlogged conditions either. But if you try something that likes a hot arid climate (e.g. juniper) you will fail whatever you try.

Do some research on species that suit your climate zone - just go and look at some nearby river banks, if you don't trust advice on the internet!

  • willow, and alder can't be eaten Apr 18, 2019 at 1:10
  • @blackthumb: but that was not a requirement in your question (and depending on situation, they could help you on having more plants what could be eat [stabilizing terrain, wind breakers, etc.]). Apr 18, 2019 at 11:02
  • they only suggested inedible species, not the edible ones also Apr 18, 2019 at 13:54
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    @black thumb - What you want (edible trees for a seasonal wet zone) may not exist. Here is a link to a site that lists the drainage requirements for a range of edibles: leafnetworkaz.org/resources/CHOOSE/… Note that nearly 100% of the species listed like "well drained" soil. Wild black cherry may be your only option (fortunately, it's probably hardy in your part of Minnesota). Also possible are peaches (see link), but they're probably not hardy.
    – Jurp
    Apr 19, 2019 at 3:41

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