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Christmas trees in pots

(10 Posts)
MoominmammasHandbag Sun 09-Dec-12 15:46:13

The annual pre Christmas outing to choose the tree seems to have turned into a bit of a chore now the teenagers are no longer really interested. How practical is it to grow one in a pot and move it into the house for a week or so a year? Presumably it would have to be a slow growing, particularly resilient, variety. Anyone have much success doing this, what sort of tree do you have and does it require any particular care?

ComeIntoTheMistletoeGardenMaud Sun 09-Dec-12 15:53:23

We do this, but this year the tree is looking very feeble and I think we may have to concede defeat and buy a new one. I don't think it's necessary to look for any particular variety - being grown in a pot will keep most trees small and slow-growing - but you do need to be careful about the size of the pot so the roots aren't more cramped than they have to be and about the quality of the compost. You need John Innes No 2 or 3 and, being soil-based, that makes the pot very heavy, so best not to attempt this with an 8ft tree!

MoominmammasHandbag Sun 09-Dec-12 16:00:01

How many years has your tree lasted maud? How many days do you normally keep it inside for and do you mist it or any thing like that?

ComeIntoTheMistletoeGardenMaud Sun 09-Dec-12 16:09:23

I can't quite remember. I think this is Year 4. In other years the tree has looked fine but it's now looking a bit threadbare - I think the odd weather conditions this yeara haven't helped. It's usually indoors from about a week before Christmas to twelfth night. I don't mist it because I don't want to electrocute myself, but I do water it most days - just enough to keep the compost damp but bot soggy.

ComeIntoTheMistletoeGardenMaud Sun 09-Dec-12 16:10:45

Oh and beware. I heard on a gardening programme that some unscrupulous vendors dip Christmas tree roots in boiling water, so even if the tree has a root it may not last beyond Chrostmas.

MoominmammasHandbag Sun 09-Dec-12 16:21:12

Ha never even thought about the lights re the misting; going up in a blue flash would not be very festive. Thanks for the tip about the root boiling, It might be a good plan to buy a tree next autumn then, to make sure it's a live one and give it time to settle down before bringing it in for Christmas.

ComeIntoTheMistletoeGardenMaud Sun 09-Dec-12 16:29:49

I didn't mean to put you off! Our tree came from the usual bloke at the side of the road and has been fine.

Ponders Sun 09-Dec-12 16:55:51

something I read said that to last it needs to be a container-grown tree, not one that's been dug up & then put into a pot

also they need potting on regularly so eventually they might end up too heavy to move

Ponders Sun 09-Dec-12 16:59:37

this is from Which?

Container-grown potted tree

A container-grown Christmas tree can last for years
These are the most expensive option. To qualify as a living or container-grown tree, it should have spent all its life in a pot.
These are a good investment if you want to keep a tree for two to three years in the garden.
The two trees we bought had been grown in small, cheap plastic pots and slipped inside a more decorative pot. Large roots growing through the bottom of the inner pot had been cut off. Both trees took up water and looked reasonably good at the end of the three-week trial, though the Norway spruce had lost a few needles.
Both would be worth keeping after Christmas although, as the label said, 'establishment in the garden cannot be guaranteed'.
We also bought a smaller Norway spruce in a larger pot. Although this was the most expensive, it looked the best at the end of our trial and should be good for another Christmas or two.


The containerised trees we found were labelled potted and the label said 'freshly lifted…with a few roots'. They had been dug up from the ground and potted, destroying most of their roots in the process.
Avoid these trees. A straightforward cut tree is a better bet, or look for a container-grown tree.
In our trial these were the hardest to look after as they were rammed into their pots so tightly that watering was impossible, and they didn’t take up much water from the saucer either.
Consequently both types dried out quickly, the Norway losing most of its needles. The Nordmann didn’t fare much better, looking dull and lifeless at the end of our trial.

MoominmammasHandbag Sun 09-Dec-12 17:04:15

Thanks ladies, that's very helpful.

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