Coping with cool early Summer.

Even though we are well into June the weather has been wet, windy and cool at times. I am glad the tender plants such as squashes are still in pots in the greenhouse. I find many of the tenderest plants stay in good condition in a 1 litre propagation Air-Pot for a long time without getting potbound.

Sweetcorn barely ripens in a typical Scottish summer so getting plants to a good size early in the summer in the greenhouse really helps them along, The roots continually improve due to the air-pruning. The same is true for sweet potato, chillies and tomato.

Sweet peas have provided a really welcome bit of colour and sweet scent, they are blooming happily in a medium Air-Pot which means I can move it easily now it is in flower.

A Hosta which was divided a year ago has demonstrated the difference between Air-Pot growing verses a ceramic planter. The plant was split in two, one half went back in original pot the other into an Air-Pot of similar volume. Both had the same compost and growing conditions, the half in the Air-Pot now has twice the foliage and ten times the flowers.

An avocado I grew from a stone gathered in Madeira has produced massive healthy looking leaves, could we possibly produce a Scottish avocado fruit in a few years?

2 thoughts on “Coping with cool early Summer.

  1. Beautiful use of the sweet peas! I’ve been considering an attempt to grow a vanilla orchid in an air-pot. I can’t seem to find a great deal of information about any sort of orchid in air-pots, so it appears that quite a bit of suitability research is in order.

    Have you tried any skirts or covers on air-pots? Not that I don’t like the look, but I’d love to arrange more of my favorite plants in air-pots along my front walkway, and the black clashes with the more natural look of planters. I’ve also been considering ways to achieve a white finish (whether a cover or actual coating) on the air-pots in order to reduce solar heating in the summer, but obviously this must not interfere with air pruning.

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  2. Thanks for the comments HipGnosis. From what I know of orchids they might do well in an Air-Pot, it will be easy to provide the free drainage they need with a fine bark potting mix, but I think some orchids do best if light reaches the roots. They are epiphytes & most roots are aerial, many orchids seem to be raised in transparent basket-like containers. We love the look of Air-Pot containers, mine are proudly on display in the front garden. Skirts! How very dare you!

    I have seen Air-Pot containers spray painted white, some people must worry about over heating but I have never had problems & they are used in hot places such as a new botanical garden in Oman, & for citrus growing in Florida. I guess some shade matting could be loosely wrapped around pots if you are concerned. Or grass matting like that used to make beach mats or tatami mats, you could even dress them up in grass skirts. But that might be getting a bit kinky?


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