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Help a newbie with newly potted hemlock?

Posted by kookybird Seattle (My Page) on
Tue, Aug 17, 10 at 20:49

Hello Gardeners!

I am new to this forum but have been lurking and reading avidly for a while. A wonderful resource for a new gardener like myself.

I wanted an evergreen container for my front porch, so just two days ago, I repotted a Sargent's weeping hemlock that I'd bought from a nursery. I put it in Al's gritty mix in a large pot along with some Japanese Spurge and Creeping Jenny. It's in total shade, but it's been warm for here (in the mid-80s) for the last week or so.

So...I've watered my new planting every day but am wondering if and when I should fertilize it? (I didn't add any slow-release fertilizer to my gritty mix and I have Foliage Pro 9-3-6 that I was hoping to use.). But I'd read somewhere not to fertilize a repotted tree for a while, so I haven't.

Does anyone know when I should fertilize this new planting? If so, your input would be most welcome. Thank you much!

Follow-Up Postings:

RE: Help a newbie with newly potted hemlock?

  • Posted by tapla z5b-6a MI (My Page) on
    Wed, Aug 18, 10 at 9:26

I'd wait a couple of weeks before fertilizing, though you CAN fertilize now with no problem, other than the fact that you don't know much about the current fertility level & could over-fertilize.

There's lots of good evidence that roots tend to colonize a container faster when fertility is low, but that idea should be tempered with the fact that would be a more significant advantage in soils heavier than you're using.

I only have 1 hemlock (dwarf). It's in a hypertufa trough w/other conifers (several years old) and doing very well on a steady diet of FP 9-3-6, though it is in full sun. Oops - that's a lie. I have 2 hemlocks. The other is in a large terra cotta pot, also with several other conifers.


Thanks Al, question, and pics

Hi Al,

Thank you for so generously sharing your expertise - I'm going to wait 2 weeks to fertilize. I am hoping all my research and planning will result in a successful container. BTW, Al, if you click on my hyperlink below, you will see that on my blog, I've listed Al's gritty mix soil recipe--just so I have a record of it and can share it with friends and family. Would you prefer that I be attribute the recipe to you more formally (or not re-post it outside of Gardenweb?). Just don't want to step on toes, being a newbie here...

Below are the pics. (I've added a hyperlink in case I don't post the pics correctly.)

Here is a link that might be useful: Pics of Hemlock

RE: Help a newbie with newly potted hemlock?

  • Posted by tapla z5b-6a MI (My Page) on
    Wed, Aug 18, 10 at 19:54

No - that's fine. I'm not one to get all upset about someone using anything I've shared here if they think it will help someone. The only thing I find annoying is when someone copy/pastes and takes credit, or has slightly paraphrased something I've written. I'm smiling as I remember an instance here on GW where I had shared some somewhat technical advice with someone on the bonsai forum who was obviously fresh to growing. Two days later, I was looking at the 'foliage plant' forum and guess what I discovered. That person dispensing the word for word advice to someone else, as though it was a matter of course. All I said Was "Gee Joe, that advice sounds very familiar." - just so he'd know he'd been discovered.

Thanks for asking; but don't worry - you're not stepping on any toes. Besides, I'd be inclined to overlook something like that from anyone named Kookybird. ;o)


Forgot to include my name!!


I realized belatedly that I'd not signed my post. My name is Karla and I do appreciate your knowledge and generosity!

Karla (aka kookybird!)

RE: Help a newbie with newly potted hemlock?

  • Posted by tapla z5b-6a MI (My Page) on
    Thu, Aug 19, 10 at 14:23

We're all pleased to make your acquaintence, Karla, I'm sure. ;o)


How often to fertilize potted weeping hemlock

I am using Foliage pro and pro-tekt and wondering how often to fertilize this planting. It's been growing for about 7 months in a container with Al's Gritty Mix. I did no fertilizing over winter but need to start up again). Any advice from someone with a hemlock would be great! Thank you!

RE: Help a newbie with newly potted hemlock?

  • Posted by tapla z5b-6a mid-MI (My Page) on
    Sat, Apr 23, 11 at 23:48

I have hemlocks in containers & I use Foliage-Pro 9-3-6 every 1-2 weeks (depending on temperatures) when the plant is growing well, at a rate of 4 tsp in 2.5 gallons of water, which figures out to about 1.5 tsp/gallon. I also add about 1 tsp of ProTeKt 0-0-3 when I fertilize any of my woody plants.


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