If you are planting up a very large pot with a single plant to act as a focus in the garden, at the front door, wherever...ensure you use a pot that is wider at the top than the rest of it; best to be the shape of a small flower pot (i.e., widening from the base). We have had a beautiful pieris in a large pot at the front door for 3 years now. However, it was beginning to tell me it needed more space. So, on Sunday, we decided it would look best in the garden, next to a lovely Spirea 'Pink Ice'. We prepared the hole well with a little bone meal and some ericaceous compound mixed with home-made compost in the bottom (it's heavy clay, so no need for too much acid). I had watered the pot well an hour before the operation began. Then we tried to get it out of the pot, and tried and tried... After well over one hour, and the use of hand-forks and a spanner, plus a border fork for a good shuffle round the edge, we finally made it. The lesson? NEVER EVER plant something like that in a pot-bellied container, where - just under the lip - there is a 'waist' that is smaller than the largest dimension below!! After 3 years, the root ball and its soil compact and, even after heavy watering, refuse to yield. I was determined that we were not going to break the pot (beautiful blue frost proof) to get it out, despite hubby's threats. It did come out in the end - and it looks lovely where it is.
Repotting - a word to the wise
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