Agapanthus in pot in colder zones?

linlily(z5/6PA)February 18, 2012

I've fallen in love with dwarf - Peter Pan- Agapanthus and wondered if I could grow them in a LARGE pot in Summer and dig up to store them with my cannas and dahlias in the Fall and Winter. This pot is quite large and last year I had a dwarf orange canna, million bells, and a few dwarf snaps in it. Do you think I may be able to grow them this way in my zone 6 garden?


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You are thinking of burying the pot in the garden and digging it up and bringing it in out of the frost? Agapanthus are a fleshy rooted perennial that does not go dormant. If frosted back they usually return from the roots, at least in our climate. I think you can do it, if you have a place to store the pots out of the freeze, if the location works for the Cannas, it should for Peter Pan. Al

    Bookmark   February 21, 2012 at 8:38AM
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I just checked the hardiness zone for Agapanthus and it is supposed to be zone 7 - coldness to about 10 degrees. I have a place to keep it in winter that might work well if I can't dig up the plants and let them go dormant, like amaryllis, cannas and dahlias. We have an unheated garage that is attached to our home. It rarely goes below freezing there and I have successfully over-wintered a very large, very old, potted star jasmine there. I can move it in there for the winter. Thanks for responding Al.

    Bookmark   February 21, 2012 at 2:45PM
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vetivert8(NI-NZ zone 9a)

What you will find with Agapanthus in a pot is that those fleshy roots tend to jam up against the sides, race out the drain holes and generally settle themselves too comfortably to be easily decanted for repotting.

I have the shards of the last terracotta pot to prove it. :-(

You could try lining the pot with heavy-duty plastic and/or repotting every one to two years. I went to a large plastic pot instead. Not as elegant, but a whole lot cheaper if I have to release the plant at some stage.

As Al says, this variety doesn't go dormant, though some do. It does 'hunker down' for winter, though.

And give it a year to settle in, establish a decent root system, before you hope for flowers. A light side dressing of slow release food, and a topdressing of good compost can be useful in the years when you aren't repotting.

    Bookmark   February 23, 2012 at 2:31AM
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Campanula UK Z8

Peter Pan is one of the hardier agapanthus (altho' mine's a goner this year (sigh) because I failed to move the pot into the cold greenhouse. Annoyingly, I had 17 flower spikes last year. It will grow in a small enough pot (15 litres) to easily place somewhere safe for winter without having to do any radical digging.

    Bookmark   February 26, 2012 at 5:24PM
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Thanks again for all of your responses. I think I will want to try growing them in a pot but I have to find them first. Google searches are not coming up with many options, but I will keep looking!

    Bookmark   February 29, 2012 at 9:36PM
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Agapanthus are so common in this climate, several non-profits I donate plants to, say NO to Agapanthus. I have about a hundred new seedlings in my lawn every spring. Al

    Bookmark   March 1, 2012 at 9:10AM
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Lucky you! I must grow a lot of hybrids so I don't get too many "volunteers" from my perennials. And we mulch, so that cuts down on seedlings too. I do have volunteer butterfly bushes, echinaceas, lavender-love these!, sidalcea, and last year found a few caryopteris from a newly planted rooted piece.


    Bookmark   March 1, 2012 at 3:08PM
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