Saxifrages in troughs - Fall 2011

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Lincks
Title: Guest
Joined: 2011-02-16
Saxifrages in troughs - Fall 2011

This is my first year growing saxes and I would be curious to see how other members saxes are doing this fall in their troughs. Pictures would be appreciated and we could use some newer postings related to saxifrages. Thanks

penstemon
Title: Member
Joined: 2010-06-24

There are about 70 porophyllum saxifrages in the troughs here. They're pretty happy. In fact, they're so happy some of them have begin to hang over the edges of the troughs, maybe trying to reach the ground.
In Denver the troughs need to be in shade in the winter, otherwise the plants shrivel to nothing in our hot winter sun.
I just bought a camera so by the time the plants bloom--late February to mid-March here---I might have figured out how to take pictures and post them.

Bob

(snowing here)

Bob

extreme western edge of Denver, Colorado; elevation 1705.6 meters, average annual precipitation 30cm; refuses to look at thermometer if it threatens to go below -17C

deesen
deesen's picture
Title: Guest
Joined: 2011-01-31

Nold wrote:

..........I bought a camera so by the time the plants bloom--late February to mid-March here---I might have figured out how to take pictures and post them.

Do get on with it Bob, I'm sat here salivating ;D

Some years ago I bought an old stone kitchen sink from our local tip (cost me 50p [about 80cents]) intending to plant it as a Saxiphrage trough. Never got round to it but this year, as the accountant of the family wasn't looking, I sneaked a selection of Porphyrion Saxes in with one of my bulb orders. Now I need to buy some stone and I'm away.

David Nicholson
in Devon, UK  Zone 9b

WimB
WimB's picture
Title: Guest
Joined: 2011-01-31

I planted my first Saxifraga trough in 2008 (see first pic). You can see how they look now on the second pic.
It's filled with ten pure species saxifrages. In March a couple of them were flowering (third pic).
If I were to redo this trough, I would create a mound in the middle, so the soil never gets below the level of the rim of the trough.

In the beginning of this year I planted one with ten cultivars. (fourth pic)

They are placed in shade during summer (from May until September) and the rest of the year they have full sun from noon onwards. They seem to like that regime.

Wim Boens
Wingene Belgium zone 8a

deesen
deesen's picture
Title: Guest
Joined: 2011-01-31

Very nice Wim, something for me to aim at there.

David Nicholson
in Devon, UK  Zone 9b

RickR
Title: Moderator
Joined: 2009-09-21

Yes, very well done.

Mine are supposed to look like that, if I'd just pay more attention...

Rick Rodich    zone 4a.    Annual precipitation ~24 inches
near Minneapolis, Minnesota, USA

Lincks
Title: Guest
Joined: 2011-02-16

Great before and after shots.  So, everyone of your original saxes made it?  You didn't have to replace any? Was there much maintenance required?  Thanks for posting.

Anonymous
Title: Guest

I'm curious if people have trouble with troughs cracking during the freeze thaw cycle?  I started using thick ceramic pots for plants I am keeping out of the ground.  I thought I had found a solution.  Then after a few years these pots cracked too.  Clay pots do not last long at all.  I switched away from thin plastic pots because they became bleached in the sun.  However, I am again trying a thicker higher-quality variety of plastic pot hoping this will last more than a few year.  My trouble is finding short and wide quality plastic pots (bowls) in large sizes.  If I do find them they are very expensive.

James

WimB
WimB's picture
Title: Guest
Joined: 2011-01-31

Thanks everyone,

In the trough from 2008, only one died and was replaced with another species. In the trough made this year, all seem to be growing very well!
Very low maintenance, during summer (and only when it's very dry) I have to water them a bit and that's it.

The soil mix I used is: 1/4 garden-soil (we have a sandy soil here), 1/4 compost, 1/4 sharp grit, 1/4 sand with very big grains (called "Brekerzand" in Dutch, I have no idea about the English translation, it's a product made from broken grit, there's a kind of "Brekerzand", made from recycled and broken concrete, too but that's not suitable).

Wim Boens
Wingene Belgium zone 8a

Lori S.
Title: Moderator
Joined: 2009-10-27

James wrote:

I'm curious if people have trouble with troughs cracking during the freeze thaw cycle?  I started using thick ceramic pots for plants I am keeping out of the ground.  I thought I had found a solution.  Then after a few years these pots cracked too.  
James

No, I've never had a problem yet with troughs cracking in the cold... I did have one that was made from a very poor recipe off the internet, that was soft and crumbly.  (We referred to it as the "chocolate brownie trough" due to that and the slightly excessive brown powder dye used in it!)  Nonetheless, it too lasted for years, growing more and more dishevelled through time (I finally dismantled it this fall and moved the plants.)

Lori
Calgary, Alberta, Canada - Zone 3
-30 C to +30 C (rarely!); elevation ~1130m; annual precipitation ~40 cm

Anonymous
Title: Guest

Lori,

    I love the beauty of glazed stoneware bowl style flower pots.  These pots are almost an inch thick.  However, even these eventually crack for me.  They usually only split into two or three pieces.  The way they split allows me to continue growing plants in them.  Although the planting mixture begins to spill out and the pots are hard to move after cracking has occurred. 
    The ones over 16" in diameter seem to split easier than the smaller diameter pots.  The thickness of the smaller pots and larger pots are the same.  The pressure the larger pots experience from expanding ice must be much larger for them to be cracking when the smaller pots stay intact.  A greater thickness for the larger pots would probably reduce the problem I have been experiencing. 
    I really like pots that are 20 inches in diameter or larger.  I had my Daphne arbuscula and dwarf mugo pine in these pots.  However, I am now trying high quality plastic pots.  I am hoping plastics strength under tension will allow these pots to better withstand the pressure from Spring thawing and refreezing.
    In my experience the thin clay pots are destroyed the quickest.  The moisture is able to get into the wall of these pots.  The result being they crack internally into thin layers resulting in disintegration.

James   

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