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Spading 20-ft Yellow-poplar Trees

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From: Ken Foszcz
Richmond , IL
I have a chance to obtain some tulip poplar trees for free. I just have to pay to move them. These trees are eight to ten inches in diameter but most of them have two main stems or butts at about ground level. They are about 20 feet plus in height and 10 years old. I am wondering if I cut or trim off one of the trunks at the base how well will the tree fair in transplant. I have plenty of room for them to grow. Thank you for your time.

Extension Message
From: Jay Hayek
Extension Specialist, Forestry
Department of Natural Resources and Environmental Sciences
Hi Ken:

I personally wouldn't spade and transplant 8-10" diameter, multi-stem yellow-poplar trees that are 20+ feet tall...most equipment can't capture enough root ball to support all that above-ground biomass. I'm sure there are many people out there in the tree care arena who will disagree, but I believe you're wasting your time and money considering how fast yellow-poplar trees grow...just my $0.02

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