Pots or 'growing on beds'?

mrtulinJune 26, 2010

The question about planting a tiny daphne made me think: I have raised beds where I've grown on small starts of perennials. This season is the first time I've bought shrubs by mail order and I'm growing them on in these beds.

For whatever reason I find these easier to pay attention to and water and generally monitor for health. unfortunately, I tend to forget to water pots regularly so they dry up. Also, I don't get around to repotting or planting out in a timely way. So things get potbound, then too dry, then ....well you know what happens!

I'm on my way to answering my own questions: I remember there used to be plants of all sorts that were field dug! Sometimes nurseries would even take your order and go dig the plant for you, and you'd get it balled and burlapped fresh from mother earth!

Is there an advantage of growing on in pots or in a nursery bed in a home garden? part of the answer is obviously being able to individualize the planting medium and having more control over the watering schedule.

just curious. Not really likely to pot up what I just potted on!

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mainegrower(Z5b ME)

A great many plants are still field grown, dug and burlap wrapped, but the disadvantages of this system for commercial growers are many. It demands a large investment in land, it's labor and equipment intensive, digging always damages roots to some degree and the b&b plants are very heavy adding to transportation and handling costs. Pot growing can be done with a great deal more control, automation, standardization and efficiency with much lower labor costs. That's why it has pretty much become the industry standard.

For the home gardener, the two methods are probably equal, although avoiding root damage and transplant shock may give an edge to pot growing.

    Bookmark   June 27, 2010 at 6:00AM
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ken_adrian Adrian MI cold Z5

I have raised beds where I've grown on small starts of perennials. This season is the first time I've bought shrubs by mail order and I'm growing them on in these beds.

For whatever reason I find these easier to pay attention to and water and generally monitor for health.

====>>>

yes.. you have a NURSERY BED ... that attracts your daily attention ... and can make you successful ....

when you scatter a hundred pots all over the yard ... things get lost.. and miss the TLC they need ... been there .. done that.. slayed a bazillion things.. lol ..

and yes.. being able to manipulate your media according to the stock is prime..

the only caveat i offer... a full sun rooting bed.. may not be the best place to put black pots.. unless you sink the pot in the soil.. temporarily.. to keep them out of hot sun ...

trees/conifers/shrubs.. may not like a warm/hot media.. the way annuals/perennials might ignore such ... and cooler media will not need to be watered as much ...

and dont forget.. shrubs and trees.. just dont need the amount of water that peren's and annuals need ..

ken

    Bookmark   June 27, 2010 at 7:35AM
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mrtulin

Ken, perhaps I misunderstand you but the plants are not in pots in the nursery bed. The start pots are so small that I think it would solve anything to put them in the ground. Maybe larger pots and the soil would help keep cooler. Nope these are rooted babies.

    Bookmark   June 27, 2010 at 11:05AM
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ken_adrian Adrian MI cold Z5

lol

i took your title literally.. as you were growing ON the beds ... kinda chuckled about it all day long.. but didnt have a chance to get back online ...

ken

    Bookmark   June 28, 2010 at 8:20AM
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mrtulin

Right. And "one" shouldn't pretend to use English-gardening idioms when "one" is just an American dirt-gardener. My favorite English gardening expression was uttered by a "lady of the estate" who inquired of Detective Morse "And do you dibble, Mr Morse?"
I must have seen that episode 10 years ago and it rattles around in my head often.

    Bookmark   June 28, 2010 at 11:53PM
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