A: You should check the tree spades offered by Vermeer UK, based in Wellingborough, Northamptonshire. It offers the US-built TS44 on a towable trailer that is suited to landscape work or high volume ball-and-burlap operations, being capable of lifting and moving trees with trunk diameters up to 10cm. The rootball formed is 112cm in diameter and 102cm deep.
Or look at the Bobcat tree transplanter if you have a skid steer loader. Again suited to nursery or landscape applications, the Bobcat attachment can be used on the company's skid steer, compact tracked and all-wheel steer loaders and is operated from the driver's seat. It comes in a wide choice of format, blade configuration and size.
The two types of Bobcat tree transplanter are the ACD and the convertible. The first, designed for fingertip spade control, uses switches on the loader's steering level. The loader must be equipped with a seven-pin control kit - only available on the G-Series. The convertible can be equipped with a pendant-style (rocker switch) control panel and is suitable for use on all loader series.
With each of these two types there is a choice of cone, truncated and modified styles of blade. The 30 degs cone, suited to hardened soils, can be used to prune roots in the nursery. The 22 degs truncated spade can be used to obtain a large root ball, while the modified transplanter is a compromise between the two, with blades angled at 25 degs.
Cone and modified blade configurations are offered in five sizes from 59cm to 108cm. The truncated style is available in four sizes from 59cm to 88cm.
Sally Drury has reported for HW and its forerunner GC&HTJ for 27 years and has spent more than five years testing machinery for HW and What Kit? The advice in this helpline is independent.