London (change)
7 messages
15/12/2013 at 09:36

I would like a mahonia to brighten up my winter courtyard - do you think i will be able to grow one in a pot?

also, any recommendations for good types - particularly with good scent??

many thanks

15/12/2013 at 09:58

Can't really help Chicky, I've got Mahonia Charity, huge now and not in a place where I could smell if it was perfumed. If I remember correctly it was fast growing, in the last 10 yrs it has reached about 9'. Looking lovely at the moment.

I might be wrong but I don't think it flowered for the first few years. I think Charity might become too big for a pot and if it doesn't flower until older maybe not of much benefit to you.

15/12/2013 at 11:04

'Soft Caress' is the best for pots as it is soft,  all the others are all rigid and liable to cut you. My 'Charity' makes me bleed every year and that is in the ground so it will be worse in a pot.

I actually do not think that Mahonia has a pleasant smell - rather harsh honeyish scent.

15/12/2013 at 11:32

mahonia charity, for me, is very pleasant.  

there are dwarf types, albeit a little spreading, but i think they are not really pot plants.  They can be drastically pruned back to keep smallish....I have rejuvenated Charity from a straggly poor flowering 12' to a handsome 7' bushy flowering plant in 3 years.  As a pot plant I think they have issues....prickly so not nice by the front door, they seem to over react to periods of drought or over watering and their leaf drop is not pleasant

for winter scent, for winter colour and for nice variegation I would grow daphne odoraureomarginata.  

15/12/2013 at 11:35
good for a couple of years or so as it grows to 1.5 mts high and wide any soil and shade or part shade ours is in full sun one tough bush go to RHS mahonia good advise
15/12/2013 at 13:12

Many thanks for all your replies. It will only need to survive in a pot for a bit, because there will soon be a bed of soil in said courtyard.  Think I will need one of the prickly ones to stop the deer having a munch.  Will check out the RHS site too.

15/12/2013 at 18:22

I think  there are some new varieties of mahonia now chicky

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