Thursday, January 10, 2008

Judgement Call

Oops. I just looked at the flip side of the crape myrtle growing instruction page, and it says to totally replace the hole dirt with potting soil.

Guess that's what the grower was talking about.

Hmm. I’ll have to think about this. Do I want to dig up the two I planted and redo both those holes? Not necessarily . . . Because I’ve read other authorities on growing shrubs who say that if the soil in your planting hole is too much different than the native soil around it, the roots will never venture into the native soil, they’ll just coil round and round in the fancier dirt you put in. And never really get established.

Only thing that might make me start over is the warning on the crape myrtle instructions not to use heavy sand-based mixes. That’s what I’ve got out there, that’s for sure. I mean, don't I want these babies to have every possible advantage?

On the other hand, can I really afford the luxury of several bags of Miracle-Gro potting soil?

Um, no. Maybe I'll just get some perlite and lighten the mix I’ve got going.

Oh, yes-- for what it’s worth, it’s been running rivers of rain since 8:30 or so. Did not go out in it to see if the leaf mulch is holding. If it's not, there's nothing I can do about it tonight.


Sandy said...

Good luck! What color are they?

Jennifer said...

I agree with the authorities.. you don't want to different of soil!

What about mixing some of those mulched leaves into the soil to lighten it up, too? I do that all the time with my plants... I use about 1/3 leaves to 2/3 soil. That might accomplish similar things while making sure that it's similar to the surrounding soil.

St. Blogwen said...

Sandy, the biggest one has "unusual Pink and Red Picotee flowers," the next one is "pure White," and the two little ones are "bright Purple." And I quote.

(No, I can't remember what 'picotee' means!)

Jennifer, I was thinking about that leaf idea, too. In fact, I went for it, after a fashion-- but that's for the next post.

Sandy said...

They sound so lovely.

p.s. I looked up Picotee: a narrow band of color on a pale ground at the edge of a petal...

Sounds SO pretty!