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According to NC cooperativeAccording to NC cooperative extension services: Trees can be planted from late fall (after Thanksgiving) until early spring. Late-fall-planted trees may be more prone to winter injury, and late spring plantings (after mid-April) are not recommended. Early winter (late December to early January) is the optimal time for planting in North Carolina.  

2015 Special Edition Garden GuideCooking Fresh with The Old Farmer's AlmanacThe Almanac Monthly Digital MagazineWhat the heck is a Garden Hod?