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container growing plants that like wet areas

Posted by jennypat Zone 3b NW MN (My Page) on
Sat, May 28, 11 at 22:11

Hi there, I have a couple of questions I hope someone can help me with. I love Cardinal flower (lobelia) Every year I plant it and it doesn't do well for me. I know it likes wet areas. Anyway while at a local garden center earlier this spring I saw they had some pots sitting in about 2" of water. The manager said they often grow them this way.

SO a light bulb went on, how about if I purchase a 12" deep liner for my whiskey barrel and plant in it? My thinking is to drill holes around the outside edge 2" to 3" Up from the bottom of the liner, so I can keep water in it but not drown the plants.

Here is my question, should I fill the tub with soil and plant in the soil? OR should I put the plants into larger (how large?) pots and just set them into the water? If I do the pots, any suggestions on how to make it look pretty? I was thinking I could put the pots into the the liner, then fill in and around them with gravel.

I am also thinking about doing this with my elephant ears and some siberian iris.

What do you guys think?

Jenny P

Follow-Up Postings:

RE: container growing plants that like wet areas

I have one of these in my perennial garden, and it's been good for 3 years now. I have to disagree that putting them in standing water is good. They do like moisture, but not soaking wet. Basically they can't be left to dry out between waterings, so they need help during dry summers. I wouldn't suggest potting them in containers, because they are very tempermental, in that if you let it go dry, it dies. Likewise, if you were to intentionally leave perched water in the pot, it will rot. Also, it will not survive the winter in a pot if left outside. The only tip I can give is to plant it in an area with partial to full sun, with rich soil, ample moisture, and MULCH. Mulch is a must if you want to succeed with cardinal flowers.


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