Potting medium and pot size for new Japanses Maple?

bdobs(8b or 9 SF Bay Area)June 3, 2014

Hi guys, I started a similar thread to this in the Maples forum, but I figure I'd get better info from this forum as this is a container specific question.
I recently bought these two new guys pictured below. They are Tamukeyama japanese Maples
I am wondering about the proper mix I should use for their final home and if I shoudl pot them directly up to the large half wine barrels, pot them up to a larger size plastic pot and sit in the barrels before a final pot up to the barrels? Or leave them in nursery pot they came in for a while?

Oh, I should add that this is the North side of my house and they really don't get any direct sunlight, just bright indirect less a little in the early morning

Been reading about Al's mixes, is gritty my best choice? 5-1-1? or something else.

The lady at the garden center said just use 1/2 acid mix and 1/2 potting soil.

ANother thing to consider is I have them on drip type irrigation which is on the same zone as my small front lawn sprinklers ao I would assume I need a rather quick draining mix as they will receive a lot of water being timed with the lawn.

Thanks!!
Brian

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johns.coastal.patio(USDA 10b, Sunset 24)

Have you seen this? Really a lot on soil for japanese maples:

Planting and Care Guide For Japanese Maples

    Bookmark   June 3, 2014 at 4:22PM
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nil13(z21 L.A., CA (Mt. Washington))

That link has a lot of good info.

I will add that trees in containers from retail nurseries are notorious for being pot bound. You won't want to keep them in their nursery pots for long. You will also want to make sure the root flare isn't buried as is often the case with container trees. That said, keeping them in the nursery containers for a week or two while getting the proper container medium ingredients isn't going to change anything. Unless they came directly fom the wholesaler, they have probably been in those pots for a while.

    Bookmark   June 3, 2014 at 7:43PM
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greenman28 NorCal 7b/8a

I put all my maples into a gritty sort of 5-1-1. It is the perfect mix....start with bark, add perlite, then add a quality potting mix (or peat). I also like some Turface or lava rock mixed in. With maples, I don't typically add Lime....just some Osmocote, and then liquid fertilizer throughout the year. You will be quite happy with a bark-based mix.

Josh

    Bookmark   June 3, 2014 at 8:43PM
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