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Shady Gardens: weekend project

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Forum: Shady GardensReplies: 8, Views: 134
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Weerobin
Saint Louis, MO
(Zone 6a)

July 26, 2010
5:37 PM

Post #7998891

This was my project this past weekend.
When we bought our home 15yrs ago, there was a beautiful dissectum japanese maple planted in a small (10ft square)
semi-enclosed space adjacent to the kitchen.
It was really pretty in all seasons, especially since it was visible from our kitchen seating area.
It thrived for several years, then over the past 5 years, it steadiliy declined.
I tried everything to save it, including composting the area, installing a dedicated sprinkler for it, thinning the overstory to let in more light, etc.
But alas, it finally succumbed this summer.
I'm not sure, but I suspect its demise was due to the poor quality soil adjacent to the house.
So I replaced it ths weekend with a large container with a new JM.
I planted several of my miniature hostas around it.
The pot is big enough to leave outdoors (it's 4ft diameter).
I hope the new residents will fare better in than the prior sad guy.
We'll see...
Here it is as of yesterday.

Thumbnail by Weerobin
Click the image for an enlarged view.

Weerobin
Saint Louis, MO
(Zone 6a)

July 26, 2010
5:44 PM

Post #7998904

Overhead view.

Thumbnail by Weerobin
Click the image for an enlarged view.

Weerobin
Saint Louis, MO
(Zone 6a)

July 26, 2010
5:51 PM

Post #7998917

Then I planted an incredibly heavy carved out stone planter with a big hosta next to our entryway.
Plan to overwinter outdoors .
It's heavy enough that I won't be moving it any time soon (i.e., never).

Thumbnail by Weerobin
Click the image for an enlarged view.

katie59
Woodinville, WA
(Zone 8b)

July 26, 2010
10:32 PM

Post #7999336

Very fun - I'll be interested in seeing your JM planter fill out.

Do you typically have a layer of snow to insulate? How low do your winter temperatures get?
Weerobin
Saint Louis, MO
(Zone 6a)

July 27, 2010
3:24 AM

Post #7999412

We don't get that much snow, but winters are still pretty cold.
We get below zero a few nights during typical winter.
I'm counting on the proximity of the house to provide a little winter cold protection.
The big pot is in a cubby-hole surrounded by house on 3 sides.
And the stone planter is super thick and nestled by the porch.
We'll see how it goes.
Noreaster
Maine
United States
(Zone 5b)

July 27, 2010
7:23 AM

Post #7999761

Make sure the stone container has really good drainage. I left several hosta in large hypertufa containers over the winter and they started to emerge in the Spring, then rotted from being too wet in there. It's not the cold that will do them in, it's being too wet as they start to break dormancy, I believe. I had one hosta wash out of a pot and lay there thru most of the winter and spring, with no soil or anything on the roots. I had been planning on getting rid of it anyway because I suspected it had nematodes. Well of course, that one survived just fine!
katie59
Woodinville, WA
(Zone 8b)

July 27, 2010
10:06 AM

Post #8000121

That's the problem here - rot. No snow cover and then thaw/melt multiple times in the spring. Even with drainage we've lost things . . .especially when it's a cool spring.

Weerobin
Saint Louis, MO
(Zone 6a)

July 27, 2010
4:08 PM

Post #8000793

The stone planter didn't have any holes initially, but I had two holes drilled.
But they turned out to be smaller than I'd hoped (each is just 5/8th inch across).
So I put 2 inches of coarse gravel on the bottom of the pot.
I'm not sure if it will be adequate drainage or not; I'll find out soon enough.

The big bowl is some sort of composite.
It just had a single central 1.5 inch drainage hole in the center.
I drilled four 3/4 inch drainage holes around the perimeter, so I think it will be OK.
CindyMzone5
Hobart, IN

July 29, 2010
7:23 AM

Post #8004178

I've had Hosta 'Krossa Regale' and some "Hak" grass growing in a composite pot for a few years now and they've come through two winters. The pot does get tucked back in against the house and is protected on the north and west sides in the winter. You're warmer than I am so you should have some good results.

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