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I would like a specimen tree on my patio

Discussion in 'Container Gardening' started by Jack Sparrow, Mar 18, 2018.

  1. Jack Sparrow

    Jack Sparrow Total Gardener

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    Browsing a catalogue from my local garden centre, I came across this. Apologise in advance for the picture quality.

    Ok! I'm not sure what happened to the photo but I'll carry on regardless.

    The picture is an acer in a pot. There was once an acer in the garden here. I believe it died of wind scorch. The wind here can be pretty nasty.

    I have a spot here on my patio that would suit a pot nicely. It is close to the house which offers 'Some' protection against the wind. It would also be in the shade from early afternoon as the sun passes over the house.

    2 questions:

    How would an acer fare under these conditions?
    Is there an alternative plant that would have a similar impact but at a fraction of the cost?

    Any suggestions would be appreciated.

    G.
     

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    • Jack Sparrow

      Jack Sparrow Total Gardener

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      • redstar

        redstar Total Gardener

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        would do fine, pick the right "type".

        Me, I 'd find something with a fragrance, as I am sitting on the deck that would be nice.
         
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        • Doghouse Riley

          Doghouse Riley Head Gardener

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          Acer Palmatums are attractive, they are slow growing and can be pruned, the one in my avatar is thirty years old now. That would be ideal in a decent sized tub.

          Other suggestions would be a mimosa and a sambuca, we have both in large tubs on our patio. These too lend themselves to regular pruning. Or else a fruit tree like an apple, pear or cherry. Even if you don't get any fruit, as with my other suggestions you'll have attractive foliage and blossom.
           
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          • silu

            silu gardening easy...hmmm

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            Have a look at the "poor man's Acer" varieties of Sambucas. Sambucas Black Lace is a cracking shrub tough, lovely foliage, pink flowers, will grow big if allowed to but restricted in a pot it won't. Alternatively Sambucs Black Beauty again lovely and similar to Black Lace, If you fancy golden foliage rather than dark maroon look at Sambucas Sutherland's Gold wonderful bright yellow foliage and doesn't mind/actually is better with some shade.
            I grow lots of all of the above as where I live it is can be windy (hellish damned east wind atm that's for sure!) You will pay nothing like the price you would for a Japanese Acer and they are pretty easy from cuttings. I only bought 1 of each variety and took cuttings so now have maybe 2 dozen. No perfume I'm afraid but well worth considering. Doghouse posted just before me and see he is suggesting Sambucas as well.
             
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            • Selleri

              Selleri Gardener

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              Here's a link to small trees, any small growing tree will probably do well in a large (min. 50cm) container. Ornamental fruit trees can be stunning. :) However they tend to offer just one splash of stunningness unless you get attaractive fruit which is not guaranteed.

              How about a Rowan (Sorbus)? They are lovely in bloom, have interesting foliage and a lot of berries, and the autumn colour is superb. Rowan also happens to be a sacred tree in Nordic mythology so you might attract birds and house elves. :love30: Or Hygge or whatever the latest skandi trend is called. :snorky:
               
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              • Verdun

                Verdun Passionate gardener

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                No, it would suffer the same fate Gary....."the wind is pretty nasty" says it all. Being close to the house is not really a protection....wind is still the killer esp with turbulence from that wall

                Consider a diosma.....aromatic, feathery, tactile evergreen foliage with delightful pinky white flowers.
                Similarly, a mounding taxus....Summergold for example but I grow a variety called Coppershine; this has yellow foliage turning a vivid coppery orange colour in spring. Or taxus Standishii that makes a marvellous pillar of gold. Resistant to the worst of the weather
                A prostrate rosemary ...some great varieties with brilliant blue flowers in spring and summer; aromatic foliage too
                A nepeta, Six Hills Giant? Again aromatic and colourful and easy
                Santolinas? The usual silver grey but also check out Lemon Fizz......butter yellow foliage and aromatic foliage.
                Sambucas Black Lace would grow in a pot for a few years or consider a eucalyptus.....pruned annually it makes a beautiful powder blue foliage plant. In a container it will prob look good for 3 or 4 years.
                Convolvulous cneorum is great in a pot....the most silver of foliage and lovely white flowers in summer.
                 
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                  Last edited: Mar 18, 2018
                • silu

                  silu gardening easy...hmmm

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                  Agree Rowans are lovely, probably my favorite genus and Sargentiana my no 1 variety. Most of the Rowans I don't think would do too well in a container? I grow Sorbus Cashmiriana which would be ok but many of the other varieties would grow too big would they not? Also while I am out of date with prices the Cashmiriana from memory was about £30 a good 10 years ago so not really a cheaper option to an Acer. However as I say I'm a bit out of date.
                   
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                  • Jack Sparrow

                    Jack Sparrow Total Gardener

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                    Dobbies list Sambucus racemosa plumosa aurea. I take it that's the Sutherland Gold.

                    G.
                     
                  • Verdun

                    Verdun Passionate gardener

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                    Not the same, exactly. Sutherland Gold is an improvement and has orange tips on new growth. For me it needs reasonable moisture. :)
                     
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                    • Jack Sparrow

                      Jack Sparrow Total Gardener

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                    • silu

                      silu gardening easy...hmmm

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                      This is my original Sutherland's Gold @Jack Sparrow. It will be about 40 years old so don't panic about the size. It responds, infact the foliage is much better if pruned annually about now. The yellow leafed varieties have rather boring white flowers but the likes of Black Lace has nicer pink flowers making a great contrast.
                      As you can see from the photo the Sambucas is close to a very large hedge and 2 (there is another 1 behind the Sambucas) yellow leafed conifers so the area is pretty dry during the growing season but it doesn't seem to mind. As long as you don't let the container dry out there shouldn't be an issue altho I agree with verdun, ideally it does like a fair dose of moisture.
                      IMG_0844.JPG
                       
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                      • Verdun

                        Verdun Passionate gardener

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                        Said before to you silu, but that's a really nice border :)
                         
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                        • BeeHappy

                          BeeHappy Total Gardener

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                          :goodpost:@silu :wow: what a BEEutiful selection of plants :wub2: and those Hostas are INcredible ....such luscious leaf foliage - they are credit to you :dbgrtmb:
                           
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                          • silu

                            silu gardening easy...hmmm

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                            That is very kind of you @Verdun there are only 2 things which are really wrong with my garden, it's far too flaming big and the gardener ie me is getting past it!
                            This dreadful weather doesn't help as by now I would normally have got it tidy...ish for the growing season but not this year because of the beast et al. I know exactly what will happen, the weather will all of a sudden get much warmer and everything will start to grow like Topsie and I won't be able to keep up with it:wallbanging:. I have 6 huge herbaceous beds (you can see part of 1 to the right in the photo) and these alone take a while to deal with getting rid of the previous seasons dead growth. Oh well in reality I am very lucky to have such a big space to grow anything I really want to, altho occasionally I would quite like a postage stamp of a garden to deal with:)
                             

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