Planting a large 'jub'
In 2005 I purchased a jubaea chilensis (Chilean wine palm) using a pre-order scheme from www.dicksonia.com, I saved 25% and got a very good price indeed on a (then) 18-year old plant. I rented a van and collected the plant from the nursery in Kilmacanogue, Co. Wicklow (just south of Dublin).
However I totally underestimated the size and weight of the plant (see story below)!
"Planting a large jub"
The jubaea which I purchased was so large that it took FOUR of us to get it into the van. And that doesn't mean lifting it in (no way were we getting it off the ground). We slid it up a piece of wood - and even then with the greatest of difficulty:
Thankfully two of us were able to get it out of the van without too much bother!
So on with digging the hole:
5 feet deep (1 foot of topsoil, 1 foot of builders' stones, 2½ feet of horrible red clay and 6 inches of moist dark brown soil with a little clay). I felt it was important to clear away the really bad clay to allow good drainage. Following this I filled the hole to the required depth using a mixture of topsoil, sand and grit, and levelled off:
Time to move the plant itself:
This was achieved using two old cupboard doors which had a very smooth surface for 'easy' sliding of the extremely heavy plant:
Nearing the hole, the plant was lowered on to its back and the drum removed using an angle grinder:
The plan was then to roll the plant up a small mound of soil and gently slide it feet-first into the hole:
Unfortunately this plan backfired - when we eventually managed to roll it up the mound, it fell right into the hole immediately! Fortunately the end result was very acceptable and the plant position needed only very slight adjustment thereafter :-)
The hole was then filled in with a mixture of topsoil, sand and grit, and the plant watered in well. Untying the leaves yielded the final result:
So then there was only the huge pile of stones & clay to deal with:
SPECIAL NOTE: Could I just say many thanks to Steve and Philip for their help in collecting and planting this beast!