gritty mix and wind

dizadncrOctober 23, 2010

Hi - This is my first year using Al's Gritty Mix (thank you Al)and I'm a little worried about it staying put with heavy winds. (The forecast is for 60-70 mph winds here in the Pacific NW tonight.) Since it drains so well,the top layer is pretty dry. Do you think I need to take any precautions for the heavy winds or am I fretting about nothing?


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greenman28 NorCal 7b/8a

the mix should have enough mass to hold itself in place....
but you could always group your containers.
You could place some stones on the top of the mix, just for the time being.

Probably nothin' to worry about ;)


    Bookmark   October 23, 2010 at 1:13PM
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tapla (mid-MI z5b-6a)

Are you worried about the plants blowing out or the soil blowing away? What are you doing - living in such a windy place!! ;o)

What Josh said, plus:

Wind can be a significant consideration anywhere, regardless of soil type. I've found I have a little less concern for trees in the gritty mix toppling over because it's somewhat heavier than most other soils. As far as toppling OUT of the container, I'd say it's about the same as any other medium - you'll need to take precautions against unestablished trees being blown from the container, no matter the medium.

Going a little further, I find that the blame goes at the feet of repotting and root-pruning, so there is a bit of a catch 22 involved. One side of the coin is that root pruning and repotting is required to keep some plants at peak vitality and growth rates. The other side is freshly repotted plants are more susceptible to being toppled out of the container.

I use various arrangements to keep toppling from occurring, but this is my favorite:

Excuse the appearance of the tree. It had just had a significant face lift. Think of a beautiful woman immediately after surgery. ;o)

'Hi' to Beth for me?


    Bookmark   October 23, 2010 at 1:40PM
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Thanks Al and Josh - I was worried about the mix blowing away not the plants, but now that you mention it!!! :-D My friend Beth (AL) said she's never noticed the mix blowing away in the high winds (and she lives right on the coast, I'm 7 miles inland). Of course, she also admits that I look "a lot closer" at my plants so I'd probably notice it more than she does! I can be a little obsessive...

Anyway, I'm sure everything will be fine. The pots are all grouped together on a low shelf against the wall of my house and they're mostly low growing sedums and succulents. I'm bringing in the Jades!So I won't have to batten them down (thanks for the demo though Al! A beautiful woman immediately after surgery indeed! I love the visual).

    Bookmark   October 23, 2010 at 6:19PM
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greenman28 NorCal 7b/8a

the winds have been raging all night and continue to slam the house! What exciting weather!
I brought my Jades in yesterday (Saturday) morning - 4:00am - when I heard the first downpour begin.
I did let my succulents get a good rain-washing and watering...but not too much ;)

I'm watching my Blood Orange and my Money Tree out on the decks, and they look to be holding.


    Bookmark   October 24, 2010 at 11:11AM
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Josh, you must be just up or down the road from me. Rain rain rain...Enough to make the skylight do it's annual leak and then stop because the place it leaks got swollen enough to stop it -- probably for the rest of the season....

I see that you indicate your zone as 7/8, though, and I think of mine being 8/9, so maybe we are farther than .... I'm in Santa Rosa.... where are you?


    Bookmark   October 24, 2010 at 12:01PM
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greenman28 NorCal 7b/8a

Hey, Susan!
Did I read somewhere that you're about 50 miles north of San Fran?

I'm up here in the Auburn foothills, 35 miles north-east of Sacramento.
I live at 1,600 feet elevation, which accounts for the difference in zone.
I don't know what my exact zone might be...but I do know that zone 8
plants are tender here. I'm just beyond the citrus boundary...


    Bookmark   October 24, 2010 at 12:18PM
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Yup that's me....Santa Rosa where the rain has been unrelenting since yesterday. And, of course, the elevation makes for the big difference in our zones. My citrus trees are marginal. Some years I get lemons; some years I get lemon mush....I have one Eureka that's been doing okay now for almost 30 years; now I'm working on a Meyer and a Kaffir Lime that are still small but are hopefully gonna make it if I don't forget to get them protected....

(sorry to be OT)


    Bookmark   October 24, 2010 at 1:12PM
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Ok, so after you guys get slammed with bad weather, we get the leftovers a couple of days later! Or at least, that's how it appears! Late last night we got a heck of a storm! Lots of thunder and high winds, and a lot of much needed rain!

I don't want to talk about leaks... the barn leaks, the chimney leaks... but we manage! We needed the rain so badly. I expect a lot of our roses to open very shortly... they were holding their buds tightly, almost in anticipation.

Today, the smell of autumn is in the air, made even better by the moisture we received! The sycamore trees are dropping their huge leaves, and the gardens are showing fall colors... pink mums, purple asters, and a last flush of lavender!

(Snniffff) Ahh... autumn! :-)

    Bookmark   October 25, 2010 at 1:51PM
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