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Best practices for newly won ACS auction plants (10 Replies)

Posted October 15, 2018 at 9:00 pm

Anyway… When you buy an ACS auction plant, do you normally plant it right away or re-pot it and let it grow in a more controled environment then plant it in the yard later? What’s the best practice?

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Posted October 16, 2018 at 7:22 pm

It depends on the plant … if it’s burly and fairly mature, there’s no reason not to plant it out right away. If it’s one of those fragile, fresh grafts, it’s best to pot it up and grow it on for a couple / few years until it’s strong enough.

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Posted October 16, 2018 at 7:24 pm

… and a note regarding the topic title. There are only a few of us who regularly come to the website. I never really understood why most of our members are afraid to answer questions and engage with other members online.

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Posted October 16, 2018 at 7:28 pm

I’m in Zone 7 and we get one or two snows per year but nothing spectacular. Is growing in a pot suggested because you can move it inside if needed so you don’t break the graft point or is it because you have more control over getting good roots? In the past, I’ve always (except for my 20+ Japanese Maples) put conifers right in the ground and most of them have done fine. This NW meeting was great and I got some really nice auction plants so I’m being extra careful to try to get them to survive 🙂 Thanks for any advice!!!

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Posted October 16, 2018 at 8:09 pm

This is useful thread but not searchable with that title! 😉
I am thinking that I am going to grow the little ones on a bit; I have had bad luck with planting small plants. Partly due to their youth, partly due to rabbits and partly because I forget about them. Dave, what is your recommended soil mixture for potting young conifers?

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Posted October 17, 2018 at 7:08 am

50% fine bark, 30% pumice / lava rock, 20% coarse compost. This works well in the western states. Individual results may vary.
The reason for up-potting is getting good roots. Fresh grafts are notorious for having jacked-up roots. Get rid of the nursery mix and spend some time unwrapping and straightening the roots best you can. The results will be a long-lived healthy plant.

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Posted October 17, 2018 at 12:10 pm

VERY helpful replies. I’ve always planted right away but am seriously reconsidering my practices. Thank you both.

FYI – I don’t see a way to edit the thread title, but if you can do that in the admin tool, feel free.

These threads and discussions are great but it would be awesome to have more participants. I sort of feel bad for the people who post and no one replies. Is there a setting for members to get a daily or weekly summary of posts? I know everyones email accounts are full of junk, but these are great topics and a useful forum for getting authoritative answers on confers from people who’ve grown it or killed it or have knowledge to share.

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Posted October 17, 2018 at 1:05 pm

Bill, you don’t have the powers to edit the message title on this platform. See if you like the new one …

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Posted October 17, 2018 at 1:56 pm

It seems that almost all nurseries plant their plants too deep – not uncommon to have to excavate down a few inches. Even one of the smallest from the recent NER auction was 1″ too deep. Don’t be fooled by all of those adventitious roots above the flare, either. You can tear those out with impunity. A woody plant buried too deep almost always responds (sometimes somewhat belatedly) by dying.

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Posted October 17, 2018 at 7:19 pm

The new title is fine. I clicked on the Edit Topic button several times and could only edit the content of the message – sort of… I edited the spelling to fix controlled a few times but it didn’t change. Anyway…
Thanks for the tips.

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