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  • UKE4U
    commented on 's reply
    Thank you for the reply Sparky, since round pots are easier to come by than square, will probably use round. Will most likely prune roots in fall and bag like you mentioned.. In the area where my potted trees are stored it is too difficult to move large pots in and out of. 5 gallon size are much more doable.

  • Sparky
    commented on 's reply
    Look up Titan Quick Spade. Its a spade attachment for the front loader. Very handy for moving big pots around

  • Sparky
    commented on 's reply
    If you put a plastic bag around the pots in the winter it will prevent the pots from drying out

  • Sparky
    commented on 's reply
    The roots leaving the square pots were pretty much the same as the round pots. Your method sounds like something that could work. I assume you would prune the roots off the smaller pot each fall which would be a form of annual root pruning. It would be like growing figs in a 15 gal pot but storing them in a 5 gal.

  • chadspur
    replied
    This has worked great for me with large pots and small. I don't pull them out and put them away in the winter since my area has mild winters. It's just my way of controlling the roots in areas I don't want fig roots wandering.

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  • WVMJack
    replied
    Is that a homemade attachment for your bucket? Pictures of it please.

    Leave a comment:


  • FigsforRomeo
    commented on 's reply
    I agree with Ross. But my concern for colder regions is the mulch pile may create a cooling effect on soil temps which may delay ripening.

    I was planning on trying a variation of this for the upcoming season for 50+ 25 gal. pots to alleviate dry rootballs due to sun and lack of water.

  • UKE4U
    commented on 's reply
    Do your pots in storage dry out much faster than those without added side holes? Or do you just let the roots grow out the drain holes without adding side holes? Do you think pot in pot mentioned above has any merit? Thank You For Your Time.

  • Coop
    replied
    I’ve been doing this for years with terrific results. I backfill around the pots with good potting mix mixed with time release fertilizer. It gives it a good punch as the roots migrate outside the pot. I also root prune the in the winter and re pot. Nice way to grow

    Leave a comment:


  • UKE4U
    replied
    Sparky .... After watching Ross's video, about your post this morning, I went back and reviewed this post. Were the results any different in your square pot as far as roots leaving the pot through the holes? I have been thinking about trying a pot in pot method for growing figs. Using a 5 gal., round? or square? pot, with side holes, place it in a 15 gal. with only bottom drainage. Main reasons, to have smaller/lighter pots to handle when placing in storage for winter that take up less floor space. The smaller pots would be removed when dormant and roots cut at holes. More attention to moisture would no doubt be needed over the storage period. When setting them in the larger 15 gal., in spring, nutrient can be mixed with fresh medium and use a liquid feed for the smaller pot at the start. Some advantages - medium around roots heats up fast, larger heavy pot less chance of wind tip over, trees remain mobile, easier to remove roots than ripping from ground, better control of water than in ground, less waste of nutrient from leaching out of internal pot, and previous mentioned easier to handle for storage. On the down side - need 2 pots for each tree, more attention needed while in storage, and more handling time, fall and spring. No mater how we look at it, storing potted trees is work. Just what some of us have to do if we want to eat fresh tree ripened figs. Any and all comments welcome.

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  • Sparky
    replied
    Let us know how it goes

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  • Rewton
    commented on 's reply
    Yes, that sounds better. The proof is in the pudding - if the leaves on your trees appear healthy and they produce fruit then the they are getting what they need.

  • shawnjames70
    replied
    I will be doing this with all my figs this year, going to use med pine bark and make raised beds and filling with pots and bark.

    Leave a comment:


  • Sparky
    commented on 's reply
    I suspected that many people out there might be using some form of this technique. My pots are probably bigger than they need to be. In the future I will probably go with smaller pots for my young trees to make them easier to handle come late fall. As far as fertilization, last summer I fertilized 2 or 3 times with a granular organic fertilizer on the surface of the pots only. I'm still trying to figure out my best fertilizer/watering regimen. It will probably take a couple of more years to see what works best. I have heard that the decomposition of wood chips uses available nitrogen but I'm not sure how much that affects me in this case since the lower roots do find their way into the soil below, and also what I'm using is not fresh wood chips but a combination of chips, small branches, some leaves, basically what you get when you grind up brush, branches and small logs. Plus it is already halfway composted. I'm not sure how much difference that makes. Maybe some others with more knowledge of soil chemistry can chime in also. Everyone has given me plenty to think about.

  • Rewton
    replied
    I am doing some variation of this technique with some of my container fig trees. The difference is that the container is just dug in a couple inches into the ground or is simply sitting directly on the ground. In both cases the roots invade the soil pretty quickly and the tree gets quite a bit of its nutrients and water from the ground.

    Here's another variation. Lou from NJ, now a member on this forum, puts trees into 7 gallon root pouches with an impermeable bottom and holes in the side. He buries these into holes just slightly larger diameter than the root pouch and so that the depth of the soil in the pouch is right around that of the surrounding soil. He uses a machete to cut the roots along the side of the root pouch in the Fall and stores the trees in an enclosure over the winter.

    One question I have about your technique is whether you fertilize any differently than you would if the roots stayed inside the container. You might imagine the decomposing wood chips would use up nitrogen as they decompose and thus there might be a larger requirement for nitrogen because of this?

    Here's another "pro" to this general technique - once the roots are invading the surrounding soil it is very unlikely the fig tree will blow over during a storm.

    Leave a comment:


  • Sparky
    commented on 's reply
    I am going on the theory that they will regrow a similar root system every year. Plus they will always have roots in the pot. I will post again this fall with more pictures so we can see how they respond.

  • Ami B.
    replied
    I would be concerned after a couple of years of removal/pruning most fibrous roots through the air holes … what would happen to the tree when only left with a big crown and tap roots... will it react negatively for not being able to feed itself adequately …?

    Leave a comment:


  • Sparky
    commented on 's reply
    I prune the roots off before bagging. The color of the mulch is lighter than the black pot so I think it keeps the roots cooler than they would be if just in a black pot, plus they are somewhat shaded by the leaves above. I should take a temperature reading this summer to check.

  • Heavy2600
    commented on 's reply
    +1 on this question. You said you cover the pots with a plastic bag. Does this maintain enough moisture to prevent root desiccation? I'd be curious if the old roots hanging outside the pot continue growing and put out additional roots the following year. Like Ross pointed out, a big pile of above ground dark compost probably heats up nicely.

  • Sparky
    commented on 's reply
    Thanks Ross. I used your advice when selecting fig cuttings this year since we are both East Coast zone 7. I am currently rooting Smith, VdB and Malta Black. Thanks for all the videos!

  • leon_edmond
    replied
    Do you end up pruning off the root growth from the holes or do you rebury the pots as is in the Spring?

    Leave a comment:


  • ross
    replied
    Wow. Finally something reinvigorating my passion for figs at this time of year. Bravo. This is fantastic. Definitely a leg up from semi burying the bottom 4 inches of a pot. I cannot do this now, but definitely at some point in the future. I'm sure it could even be improved to allow for more heat.

    Leave a comment:


  • Otis
    replied
    Very nice results, and I keep learning how inventive so many fig growers and gardeners in general are. I think you will still need to do an out of pot root pruning at some point, but it will probably be a lot less frequently. Thanks for the great photos.

    Leave a comment:


  • Figman86
    commented on 's reply
    Thanks I would cut the pots if needed. I’m definitely going to try it on some young 1st year trees

  • Sparky
    commented on 's reply
    Not sure how well that would work. Maybe try it on a smaller scale to test. You would have to be able to remove the cuttings from the tree pots after they root
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