I meant to do more garden work today, but I started reading Catching Fire in the morning and just didn’t put it down. I finished in time for dinner. So, no gardening today. But I did find this passage from the New Encyclopedia of Gardening Techniques to be especially illuminating:
The life of a transplant
We often expect newly planted trees to romp away after planting, but newly planted bare-root transplants will take at least three years to grow vigorously.
When trees are lifted from the nursery field, they can lose up to 90 percent of their original root system, so in the first year of planting, do not expect too much of the tree, when shoots are likely to be shorter and leaves smaller than normal.
Roots gradually take hold, but as leaves and shoots are smaller and shorter in the first year, energy for root growth will be limited.
Roots spread over a greater distance, so they will be able to take up more water and nutrients, promoting more top growth.
Third & subsequent years:
Vigorous growth results now that the root system is fully recovered from transplanting and the roots are well established.
–New Encyclopedia of Gardening Techniques (Royal Horticultural Society), 91.
I think this can be said for more than just trees…