If you have decided to take the plunge and become a new master gardener, and you’ve chosen container gardening as your method of planting, then the question you have to ask yourself is “Can you leave plants in pots?”. This is an important question, as it will determine whether you can take advantage of all the benefits that container gardening offers. Of course you have the choice of choosing to plant in other ways but if you leave plants in pots, you’ll be missing out on one of the greatest benefits of container gardening: the ability to move them around your garden in comfort.
Container gardening can be a wonderful experience but it can also be very frustrating if you have decided to put your trust in a small pot and have it get damaged by insects, water retention or lack of circulation. You may even end up with rot and mildew problems taking place. Pots are often the first stop for pests when coming through the garden doors and this is why they should be carefully selected to ensure they are suitable for your plants. Too many plantings in a small pot will make it hard for pests to access the dirt below the soil and kill your plants. To increase the odds, plant your seeds in a larger pot first and then plant your seeds directly into the dirt.
When you are left with damaged or dying plants, what do you do? Of course you can move them to another area but you may find it more appealing to simply keep them in a pot until they grow better again. One way that you can make this possible is by learning how to prune your plants. You don’t want to cut off too much of the growth because it will be replaced as the plant grows. The only problem with this technique is that it doesn’t always work as you may expect, and in some cases you may end up killing the plant through over-watering or cutting it too short, but the results are often worth it.
If you want to leave pots on the ground, there are a few things you should consider first. Do you have drainage holes in the bottom of the pot? Do you have a way to get the soil out of the bottom of the pot if you do accidentally drown your plant? These are the things you need to consider if you decide to leave your plants in pots.
Another thing that you need to take into consideration is the size of the pot that you will use. If you are growing plants that are very tall, then you may find that it is easier to have a larger pot, but this also means you need to buy a bigger pot. Soil types and amounts also affect this decision because you would not want to put sandy soil in a pot with clay soil. Clay soil tends to stay dry and compacted longer, so you could end up having to repot more often if you use pots with clay soils.
The bottom line is, can you leave plants in pots? Yes, but only for a short time. When you want to move a plant that is tall, has large leaves, or is bushy, you may consider having it transplant to a larger container that has more room to spread out.