Alberto Castillo ezeizabotgard@hotmail.com
Sun, 31 Jul 2005 18:56:27 PDT

>From: Arnold Trachtenberg <arnold@nj.rr.com>
>Reply-To: Pacific Bulb Society <pbs@lists.ibiblio.org>
>To: pbs@lists.ibiblio.org
>Subject: [pbs] pots
>Date: Sun, 31 Jul 2005 17:11:30 -0400
>I have possible found a potter that will make some pots with side slits
>as you have described.
>Could you describe the details such as ideal height, circumference and
>how far up the side the slit should extend.
>Much appreciated,

Dear Arnold and Barbara et al:
                                                  I garden in what could be 
described as zone 9 in winter and zone 10 in summer. Finding pot 
increasingly bigger was a problem and they were hard to obtain in quantity. 
Besides all big ones were soft black plastic (although of good quality and 
long lasting). With time and tired of finding a problem where a possible 
solution to cultivation difficulties (BONSAI EFFECT) I unexpectedly started 
gathering used paint plastic buckets. These are the same here and in the 
States. They are 20 litres (say 5 gallon) and measure 30 cm (12 in) in 
diameter and 40 cm (16 in) tall. They are obtained in several colors but I 
use white for those plants that need cooler conditions and black for those 
that like it warmer. As for the slits (here my technical English may fail 
me) you can add a cutting disk to your electric driller and with this you 
can cut slits in even the thickest plastic. For the 5 gallon buckets I cut 
three vertical slits one third up the bucket’s height, from the bottom up 
and at the same time cutting 1 in or so fo the bottom itself to avoid any 
watering collecting at the bottom. As you see I do not use clay at all, 
because it is not good for warmth lliking plants,  fragile and pretty 
expensive. Plastic buckets are cheap, standard in size and last at least 8 
years in full sun before becoming brittle. Besides, they come with a lid 
that can be put in place to keep the plants dry in due course.
                                                Changes that have taken 
place since I started growing in such big containers are well beyond my 
wildest dreams so to speak because I started using them because some bulbs 
or clumps had grown tto big for most normal pots. No tonly they have grown 
imcomparably happier and healthier but unexpected effects have taken place: 
offsetting for the first time, flowering for the first time, SEED SETTING in 
plants that were regarded as sterile and amazing duration fo the flowering 
season (for instance, three or more months non stop in Mexican spp. of 
Zephyranthes, just to name  a few)..
                                               Bob has made very interesting 
modifications to this when repotting part of Mary Sue’s collection and there 
is a thorough account of it in a back IBSA Bulletin.
                                               I pity the poor potter but I 
am sure you can obtain these used paint buckets in the States very cheaply.
                                               Although I read with great 
interest posting by great experts like Jane and John L. it is not very easy 
to apply their findings literally because of our year round rains. We have 
to make special provision to avoid them killing many dormant bulbs.
                                                Hopefully this is clear 
enough. My pleasure to make any further explanation.
All the best

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