was Growing nerines, now clay versus plastic pots

Hans-Werner Hammen haweha@hotmail.com
Tue, 04 Oct 2011 14:57:26 PDT

Greetings from Germany
Clay Pots are but the Dino-Sauriers as regards containers as root confinements. My success with using these for Hippeastrums was poor. Plastic containers, and supplying lukewarm water with diluted fertilizer ad 0.3 g/L exclusively from below, provides maximum performance. FURTHERMORE, I found out that it makes a considerable difference, whether you concede 1 L to one bulb in an individal pot VERSUS sharing 10 bulbs a communal  Volume of 10 Liters. I generally raise seedlings in 50 cm balcony boxes. 2 lines of 8 seedlings thus 16 seedlings sharing a Volume of 10.5 Liters.

> Date: Tue, 4 Oct 2011 17:32:05 +0100
> From: nikko123@btinternet.com
> To: pbs@lists.ibiblio.org
> Subject: Re: [pbs] was Growing nerines, now clay versus plastic pots
> In response to Peter I will add a rider to my comments, we grow all our bulbs on roller benches in a 1 acre ex-commercial Venlo Glasshouse that was designed originally to grow rhododendrons from cuttings. It is tall and airy with good air circulation. We grow all our extensive collection (500-600 varieties) of South African bulbs in plastic pots with the sole exception of Ixia viridiflora because in Graham Duncan's new book on SA Bulbs he says they don't like plastic! and do not have the luxury of being able to plunge our clay pots into cooling sand beds- indeed at Wisley, the RHS garden here in the UK they have the luxury of being able to plunge.
> (You can see my new little book of photos of our South African bulb collection by following the links on the nerines web site.)
> It could be said that our collection is growing on an almost industrial scale- but it is a private peccadillo- if you have the space one might as well try and fill it....
> Its not really lack of insight- it is plain old ignorance and practicality that drives our efforts, oh to have proper plunge beds and the resources and time to mollycoddle each plant... with us you takes your chances and if you flourish, brilliant, if you shrivel and die we'll probably not notice for a season.... we are equally cavalier about our potting mix, (which is free draining), and all our plants irrespective of perceived wisdom about 'this one comes from sand, this one from rock' get the same treatment and all seem to thrive as far as I can see, but then we're not very scientific or botanistic- we just like to have fun with our plants. (Of course see comment above about the self-editing nature of our collection).

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