I have a blue spruce which I would like to move. It is 13 feet high and 8 feet wide. Should the roots be pruned and how large a ball of earth should I leave on the roots when I move the tree? A tree of this size would have to be moved with machinery. You should have a professional tree mover do it. They would use a vermeer, or similar machine, to first dig the hole to set the tree into, and then scoop the tree out of the ground, with roots and soil ball intact.
The tree is carried right in the ''scoop'' to the prepared hole and set in an upright position so soil can be filled in around the roots.
I have just found some leftover seeds which we must have stored a year ago last fall, as they are dated 1980 and 1981. They include cabbage, peas, tomatoes , peppers and various flower seeds. Do you think these would still be good enough to plant this spring? They were in our basement. If stored cool and dry, many seeds retain their viability for two or three years , some longer. Some will stand freezing, others will not.
Your seeds can be easily tested to see if they have good germination. Place two or three thicknesses of paper towels in a shallow pan. Place 10 of each flower or vegetable seed on the towels. Place two or three thicknesses over the seeds and water until towels are soaked. Keep moist at all times. Place where temperature remains at 70 to 75 degrees F. constantly.
Allow two weeks for sprouts to appear. Count the number of sprouted seeds in each batch and you have the percent of germination. If less than 80 percent sprout, discard them.
My daughter, who lives in another state, lost her pussy willow bush. She has felt badly about it and I'd like to have one sent to her. They don't grow here in Mississippi so I don't know where to order one. Could you give us some suggestions? You didn't say which state your daughter lives in but we can give you the names of three large, long-established mail order nurseries from different areas which do list pussy willow.
For French (pink) pussy willow write to Kelly Bros. Nurseries, Dansville, N. Y. 14437 or Gurney's Seed & Nursery Company, Yankton, S. D. 57079. For silver pussy willow and black pussy willow write to Wayside Gardens, Hodges, S. C. 29695.
Kelly's and Gurney's catalogs are free. Wayside has a more lavish one for $1, refundable with purchase.
I read recently that after test-sprouting, unwanted garden seeds could be given to the birds. I've also read that one should not use seeds intended for garden or farm planting for human consumption because of chemical treatment to prevent problems with seedlings. If these seeds are not safe for human consumption, wouldn't that be the case with the birds as well? You are correct. Seeds intended for planting should not be used for human consumption or for feeding birds or other animals, unless it is stated on the seed package that they are safe for this purpose.