Pot-in-pot planting method

Darlene57(8b)May 24, 2013

Hello all,

I am new to this forum. I have read Al's discussion on soil and mixes. I am curious as to the benefits of pot-in-pot planting. Does it improve drainage? Help to wick the PWT? What is the proper procedure for planting this way? Thanks

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I just read Al's post "Dealing with Water-Retentive Soils" and it answered my question as to the benefits of pot-in-pot planting. But I am still wondering about if the inner pot is clay, what type of outer pot should be used. Thank you!

This post was edited by Darlene57 on Fri, May 24, 13 at 18:58

    Bookmark   May 24, 2013 at 5:36PM
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I used 2 of the same sized black plastic nursery pots. I think half the battle is keeping the root ball cooler, so the soil doesn't get too warm or dry out too quickly and uses less water. I saw an old episode of "Gardening by the Yard" where they were using this method at a tree farm, and am trying it for a few annuals I will pull and overwinter them in the garage. It came in real handy during a late frost, I just poped the pots out, put them into the garage overnight, then put them back in the next day!

I'm not sure it has any effect on drainage or PWT. I make my own 5-1-1 and if you use that with the pot in pot, it should work well.

    Bookmark   May 24, 2013 at 7:47PM
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tapla (mid-MI z5b-6a)

Pot-in-pot uses the soil in the lower pot as a wick to draw perched water from the pot the plant is in, into the soil in the lower pot. The ht of the PWT any soil supports is the same in any pot, regardless of pot size or shape. If a plant is planted in a soil that holds 4" of PW at container capacity (when the soil is fully saturated), and you use the pot-in-pot technique with at least 4" of soil in the lower pot, you will eliminate perched water in the main pot entirely. True too, is the fact that the double potting helps to keep the main pot soil temps cooler and more stable. By double potting, you can enjoy some of the benefits that can be had by growing in mini raised beds, as opposed to conventional containers.


    Bookmark   May 24, 2013 at 9:02PM
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Thank you both for your quick response. I live in SW Oregon (zone 8b) and have a young Sago palm that I brought from my Mom's home in Southern California and have not been having much luck. I think damp soil has been the one of the main issues. It's been hard to decide when to leave it out and when to put it in. It's not doing too well right now. I'm hoping it will flush soon and will be OK! Thanks again!

    Bookmark   May 24, 2013 at 9:33PM
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