Repotting - The cultivation of plants in pots - How to care for and cultivate plants: repotting
HOW TO GROW AND CARE FOR OUR PLANTS
of indoor and outdoor plants
Operations before repotting
Before repotting, the plastic pot must be washed thoroughly as well as the terracotta pots must be left to soak for at least 12 hours to eliminate any kind of residue and impurities. If you are using pots from previous cultivations it is advisable that, before being reused, they are rubbed with a brush and with soap and water and then carefully rinsed before using them to eliminate all traces of impurities and limescale.
Choice of soil type
There is no general rule for the type of soil to use as each species has different cultivation needs therefore it is advisable to consult the technical sheets of each plant to choose the right soil. In a very general way we can say that for almost all cultivated plants there are two essential elements of a good cultivation mixture: river sand (or other material such as expanded clay) and peat where the former serves to make the soil more permeable. to avoid dangerous water stagnations and the second to make the soil softer and retain moisture.
How to repot
After choosing an appropriate space to repot, the day before you water the plant generously so that it comes out of the pot easier and the roots are more elastic and therefore less prone to breakage.
If you are using terracotta pots, moisten them thoroughly inside before repotting so they will not absorb moisture from the compost too quickly.
In the bottom of the terracotta pot, place some pieces of earthenware in advance (recover them from broken pots) on the drainage hole. If you do not have them available, use stones of the right shape and size to cover the drainage hole. This operation is very important as it has the purpose of preventing the drainage hole from becoming blocked over time and thus preventing the flow of excess watering water. Plastic pots generally do not need this precaution as the drainage holes are arranged in a radial pattern along the entire circumference.
Once the pieces of earthenware have been arranged, fill the new pot with some soil previously chosen and prepared and it would be advisable to first add gravel or expanded clay to the bottom of the pot, always to favor a more rapid flow of watering water. in excess.
At this point, take the plant and carefully remove it from the old pot: if it is small, cover the earth with the palm of your hand and support it while you turn the pot upside down by tapping with the other hand on the bottom of the pot to facilitate detachment. of the earth and roots from the old pot. If this does not happen, pass a sharp knife between the walls of the pot and the compote. If, despite these precautions, you notice that the plant is still resisting, then break the old pot. If the plant is thorny, help yourself with a piece of paper that you will wrap around the plant to be able to remove it from the pot (see example of Echinopsis); if the plant is large, it is better to spread the pot with the plant on its side and tap on the pot, moving it and having another person help you to flare it.
Repotting is the time to check the health of the roots and to remove dry or damaged ones.
The plant must be placed in the center of the pot and making sure that a certain free edge remains at the top of the pot, which is essential to prevent the water from overflowing during the watering operations. On average, the free edge must be between 1.5 - 5 cm depending on the size of the pot: the larger the size, the greater the free edge space must be.
Add soil as much as necessary by pressing the soil even slightly and taking care that the plant is placed in an upright position and not tilted. Lightly tap the pot on the table to eliminate air bubbles and settle the compote well and press lightly with your fingers and possibly add more earth as long as needed. Once all this is done, water abundantly.
However, if during repotting you have pruned the roots or some have broken, do not water immediately but wait at least a week to give the wounds time to heal as the water could become a vehicle for parasitic diseases.
In the case of large pots that make repotting difficult, it is necessary to periodically renew the compost by eliminating the first 3-5 cm of soil and replacing them with fresh soil. This technique is called backfilling and it can also be done more than once in the course of a season.
Hydroculture: this is how plants are grown in water
L'hydroculture it's a cultivation techniqueand plants that do not require soil (ideal indoors), according to which the roots are grown in a deep layer of balls of expanded clay. The latter, only for support, do not play the role of nourishment that generally touches the earth: it is water that performs this delicate task.
Plants are held in home , I'm indoor plants and they are able to grow very well even without land. All plants can be grown with this method, even cacti and cacti fat plants, the very ones that need less water!
The salvia officinalis plant
The sage (Salvia Officinalis) is a shrubby plant of the Lamiaceae family, therefore related to other important herbs such as mint, thyme, oregano and rosemary. Apart from the smell, it is easily recognizable by looking at the leaves, characterized by their elongated oval shape and above all by the light hair that covers them, also giving a green color tending to gray-white.
It's about a perennial species, which reaches about half a meter in height and can then widen to form a beautiful evergreen bush. At the beginning of summer it emits flower spikes in plume, the small petals are purple or lilac.
Many different sages
There are one multitude of sage varieties, with different characteristics both aesthetic and in terms of aroma, from white sage to the strange pineapple sage, up to the giant sage with particularly large leaves, excellent for frying.
Then there are sages with particular colors, some have great aesthetic value and do not disfigure among the ornamental plants in the garden, for example white sage, sage aurea, purple sage.
Environment suitable for succulents
The places where rains are rare, characterized by long periods of drought, are there ideal homeland of succulents or succulent. With a high water storage capacity and very low transpiration, they are the type of life found in almost all continents where desert areas exist, but also in places such as the Amazon rainforests where there is high humidity.
However, those lands with a total absence of rain have not been colonized, since the main action of water conservation and subsequent management of the same could not take place. In Mexico and California you can find the variety of more resistant succulent plants and large, capable of storing large quantities of water using them in periods of drought which are not, however, too long. Furthermore, these plants can bear very low temperatures, as in the desert areas during the night they often reach 0 ° C.
Watering and fertilizations
Rhododendrons love moist and well-drained soil, they can't stand arid earth, they need to be watered very frequently, in fact they grow better in areas with a mild and rainy climate.
For fertilizations, use fertilizer for acidophilic plants to be distributed every 15 days diluted in the watering according to the manufacturer's instructions.
How to care for potted camellia
Cultivating camellia and admiring its splendid flowering which in winter already announces spring is not difficult. This splendid plant of oriental origin lives well on the balcony and in the garden, with simple attentions to keep it healthy.
One of them, Camellia sinensis, gives us a precious drink, tea. Another one, Camellia oleifera, it is considered one of the plants that will have an important role in the future: an oil that can be used both in cooking and in natural medicine is extracted from its seeds, which seems to have effective properties against the tendency to obesity. But what everyone knows is the camellia of our gardens, Camellia japonica and other species: growing camellias in pots is easy and gives the pleasure of their flowering, already in January in the South and until March-April in the North.
A fascinating story: from Asia to Italy
Over 1000 years ago Buddhist monks began cultivating wild camellias from Asian forests for ornamental purposes. Later, the merchants of the British Company of the Indies understood the potential business linked to the importation of camellias, at a time when power was often expressed also in the exhibition of botanical rarities for which real fortunes were spent. So many varieties of Camellia japonica, one of the most resistant, decorative and easy to hybridize species.
In Caserta, a record-breaking camellia
The first camellia plant to arrive in Italy of which we have certain news is the one planted in the English Garden of the Royal Palace of Caserta around 1786, still today one of the oldest living camellias in Europe at the same time the camellias spread in Tuscany and still today in the ancient gardens of the Lucchesia exist specimens that are at least two centuries old. The Lucca shipowners, who traded with China, imported many camellia plants at the beginning of the 19th century, some of which can still be admired today during the "Antiche Camellie della Lucchesia" event held on the weekend of March 2016.
How to grow camellia in pots
To keep the camellia healthy and vigorous it is necessary grow it in a large and deep pot, with a layer of clay marbles on the bottom. The environment must be bright, in the sun until April but in the shade during the summer, well ventilated and with high ambient humidity in summer it is advisable sprinkle the foliage with water even every evening, with non-calcareous water, to prevent the leaves from having a dry edge or tip. Potted camellias are sensitive to frost: it is advisable to cover the foliage in winter with a veil of non-woven fabric or transfer them to a greenhouse if the temperatures are very low. The soil must always be kept slightly moist. Where possible, save rainwater to water the camellia: it does not like the calcareous and chlorine-rich water of urban water networks. Alternatively, leave the water in the watering can overnight before using it.
The GESAL expert advice
GESAL Acidophilic Soil is the recommended substrate for camellias and other plants that require an acid growing environment (with a pH below 7), such as azaleas, rhododendrons, hydrangeas. Repotting should be done after purchase, in a wider and deeper container, with a layer of clay marbles on the bottom.
The camellias require fertilizer in the spring every 12-15 days, and every 20 days in summer the product to be used is GESAL Acidophilic Liquid Fertilizer, rich in microelements that reduce the risk of deficiencies and weakening, favoring a luxuriant growth and bright colors of the flowers and leaves.
For any doubt or question, Gesal can help you: consult our experts now!
Dwarf fruit plants: some examples
Let's see some concrete examples of dwarf fruit plants:
- the dwarf peach, particularly appreciated for its spring flowering, it will be placed in a warm and sheltered area and watered daily during the summer months, making sure that the water penetrates up to the roots
- the dwarf apple tree it is one of the simplest dwarf fruit plants to grow because it does not require any pruning
- the peach dwarf walnut it requires a deep water supply immediately after repotting, to then go to diminish especially in the cold months you will also have to carry out pruning interventions during its vegetative rest
- the but dwarf it is an excellent choice to get close to this kind of plants because it does not require special attention
- the dwarf apricot it tolerates drought well and, more generally, hot and dry climates you will need to make sure that, at the time of repotting, its roots are moist enough and you will also have to fertilize it in spring, during the vegetative restart
- the dwarf cherry it prefers cool climates, but does not tolerate too low temperatures
After this overview you can consider yourself ready to try your hand at cultivating these small, productive and beautiful plants.
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