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Midland Diary Discussion: 13 June 2010

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Started by: Diane Clement

Midland Diary No 29 - Repotting hepaticas

Go to latest contribution by Diane Clement, 14 June 2010, 19:58. Go to bottom of this page.

Contribution from Diane Clement 13 June 2010, 21:48top / bottom of page

My new diary entry can be read by clicking here:

Midland Diary No 29 - Repotting hepaticas

Please add any comments in this discussion thread here

Contribution from Colin Dolding 13 June 2010, 22:08top / bottom of page

Thank you Diane for a Hepatica update.

When will you be potting on the seedlings? I noticed at Aberconwy 3 weeks ago they had all theirs pricked out into small pots at a very early stage.

I have always left mine another year.

Contribution from Diane Clement 13 June 2010, 22:18top / bottom of page

I tend to leave them as there tends to be only a few in each pot. I suppose if there were more than eight or so I might repot them in the autumn, but I think they are still quite small. Do Aberconwy prick them out while they are still at the cotyledon stage? Only a few of mine have got true leaves on and they don't always make proper leaves in the first year.

Contribution from Colin Dolding 13 June 2010, 22:21top / bottom of page

As far as I could see, they were all at cotyledon stage.

Contribution from Diane Clement 13 June 2010, 22:23top / bottom of page

I expect Keith sows more seed in the pots than I do. I don't think I've ever repotted in the first year and they aren't overcrowded.

Contribution from Margaret Young 13 June 2010, 22:56top / bottom of page

Diane,well done on continuinng these photo-rich items on practical subjects.... getting the point over so clearly to the audience.

What a relief that your bay is re-growing.... while some of our winter casualties are making attempts to sprout there are some which really are gone... ah, well,we must just view any losses as 'planting opportunities' !

Contribution from Martin Rogerson 14 June 2010, 19:14top / bottom of page

I'm always amazed by growers who have the courage to take all the compost off plant roots when repotting. I'm too scared that amount of baring all will result in disaster. I must learn to be brave!

Thanks Diane.....and if anything dies while practising such bravery I'll know who to blame!

Contribution from Diane Clement 14 June 2010, 19:58top / bottom of page

OK, Martin, I accept full blame! Actually, my advice came originally from John Massey, owner of Ashwood Nurseries. I?ve heard his lecture/workshop on hepaticas several times now. And just to digress a minute, one time I said to him ?John, I?ve heard this talk five times before? (that was supposed to be a compliment to him as I returned to hear it one more time). He replied to me ?would you like to do it for me?? - a genuine request from him as he gets seriously troubled by nerves when giving talks.

Back to the point, in John?s workshop version of his lecture, he shows a hepatica ready for repotting and he quotes popular advice saying ?don?t disturb the roots? whilst contradicting this by vigorously ?combing? the roots to remove dead roots! His plants have never suffered from this treatment (and I would guess he has the best private collection of hepaticas in Britain, rarely on view to the public). So I do as he does, and it seems good advice. The point with hepaticas is that they like airy compost, living as they do in the leaf litter under deciduous trees. As long as they are well watered in afterwards, they are fine with this treatment.

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