Wednesday, May 03, 2006

MY AGAPANTHUS

A few years ago, I planted up a blue Agapanthus in a pot. At first it appeared very happy there and produced many lovely blue flowers. However, the last couple of seasons, the number of flowers have diminished and last year it produced only one.

Deciding that it would probably do better if it was moved into a garden bed, I called for assistance from John to help get it out of the pot. This proved to be more difficult than expected and after several goes at extracting it from the pot, John said there was only one way to get it out and that was the cut the pot in half (it was plastic).

Well, I had guessed that the reason for it not flowering was because it was potbound, but I certainly never envisaged that it was so bad, for the sight we saw after cutting the pot in half was amazing. The roots had completely taken over and it had grown into the perfect shape of the pot, there was little or no soil left, it was all solid root.

Poor thing, it was almost starved to death, no wonder it was struggling to flower. We have since chopped the root ball into four parts so I’m hoping that I will have four prolific new plants now.

18 comments:

Sigrun said...

Marion, you have done well! When an agapanthus i longer than three years in a pot, you should give it in a new pot or divide it in some parts. I have had 2 Agas (a gift) in last autum. They were so big, that Mr. Wonderful could not carry the pots without help.
I divide them each into 6 parts, potted them and give it to friends. Now the parts are very nice plants and will flower this year.

Your photo is very funny!

Sigrun

Carol said...

I've learned that Agaphantus likes to sit very tight in pots. Since I've planted mine in a bigger pot a few years ago it hasn't bloomed anymore. I was very said about it because firstly it is a very expensive plant and secondly I so love the blossoms looking like blue balls. But it was my fault, I shouldnt have replant it. Well this year in March I was at a garden fair and asked an Agaphantus gardener and specialist from Holland. He sold me a special fertiliser for Agaphanthus and told me to give it a good handful in April and then again in June and August.He said that they live very close in pots with very few soil so they need a good fertiliser. I hope he was right and it'll help. I'll let you know! Fingers crossed for yours too Marion! I think that Al, I mean Sigrun has divided her Agapanthus too, I'm sure she can tell you/us if this works and if and when they are going to bloom again!

Alice said...

Agapanthus certainly are prolific root growers. In my son's garden there is a very old bed of agapanthus that are so compacted they're actually pushing each other out of the ground.

One of the disadvantages of those curved pots is that it's almost impossible to get the plant out, as you found. The bottom section is larger than the neck of the pot and if the roots are solid, .....!

I hope you get many lovely blue agapanthus flowers this summer. It's such a heavenly blue. Do you have the white one, too? I'd love someone to breed a pink one (the colour of a dutch hyacinth); I think the blue, white and pink together would be beautiful.

Marion, I'm longing to see more photos of your garden and your village, pleeeeeaase.

Connie and Rob said...

Dear Marion,

I would be thrilled if you would send be a postcard and I would like to send you one as well. Thank you so much for offering. I am having so much fun.

I tried to contact you through your email on your profile and it kept coming back as undeliverable. Please e-mail me at scooby2222@sbcglobal.net.

Take care,
Connie

Elly said...

Marion, you have such a lovely blog. You may remember me as Eileen, but decided to change to the 'nickname'! From LearningHumility here at blogspot.

Sharon K said...

You had one beautiful flower that was not doing well, and now you will have 4 beautiful flowers. Is that not one of Gods wonderful wonders. Hugs to you Marion.

Rosa said...

Wow! Now that's what I call rootbound! I'm sure you could hear it sigh a breath of fresh air once that pot was cut!

Carol said...

I've learned that Agaphantus likes to sit very tight in pots. Since I've planted mine in a bigger pot a few years ago it hasn't bloomed anymore. I was very said about it because firstly it is a very expensive plant and secondly I so love the blossoms looking like blue balls. But it was my fault, I shouldnt have replant it. Well this year in March I was at a garden fair and asked an Agaphantus gardener and specialist from Holland. He sold me a special fertiliser for Agaphanthus and told me to give it a good handful in April and then again in June and August.He said that they live very close in pots with very few soil so they need a good fertiliser. I hope he was right and it'll help. I'll let you know! Fingers crossed for yours too Marion! I think that Al, I mean Sigrun has divided her Agapanthus too, I'm sure she can tell you/us if this works and if and when they are going to bloom again!

Reflection Through The Seasons said...

Hi Carol....
Thanks you for your comment. Yes, I too had heard that Agapanthus like the compactness of a pot. My big mistake was to put this one in a pot that was shaped rather than a straight sided one. In a straight sided one, it would have been easier to knock it out to upgrade to a slightly larger one. At the time of splitting this monster, I didn’t have any spare pots available to plant it in, so the garden may be a temporary measure. However, I have other Agapanthus in garden beds and they do flower, but not as prolifically as the other potted ones do.

Its interesting to know that there is a special fertiliser for them, if you get some, let me know what it is called please, then I may be able to track some down in this country.

I do agree they are a spectacular flowering plant that are long lasting. I’ve tried a few times to grow white ones, but without success. I shall be interested to hear if Sigrun has any advice. Marion

Sigrun said...

Horrible! I have posted a comment yesterday and where is it? :-(

Your divided pot looks funny, Marion! You have to divide an agapanthus in a pot each 3 years or so, because when you do it not, it will not flower so much. I have a friend, she gives me two monster-agas, I devided them in twelf parts and all of them looks very good. I've given them to members of my garden-forum in Germany. Agas need a lot of manure (correct?) and a lot of water, but they don't like to stand in water. In Winter I place my agapanthus in the garage, in summer on the terrace in front of my living-room. I send you a photo. It is so blue and I have it together with canna indica tropicana. Beautiful! Normaly I hate orange, but in this case....

Sigrun

Reflection Through The Seasons said...

Hi Sigrun.....
Sorry that your first message didn’t get posted, I had some problems yesterday, I couldn’t send or receive emails. I hope that the problem is solved now.

Thank you for your advice. I think I will buy some larger pots and dig the pieces of agapanthus root from the garden and pot them up (straight sided ones this time!).

Our milder climate allows us to leave our Agapanthus outside all winter, so mine are quite hardy now.

Last year I bought ‘Abutilon’ I kept it in my heated greenhouse throughout the winter. I was late taking it out of there this spring, I see now that it already has two flower buds on it. Do you have this plant? I’m concerned it may be too frost tender to leave out during winter. Marioncdaugvhl

Carol said...

Marion you are very welcome, but I must tell you that I've already bought some of the fertiliser from that specialist from Holland and gave the first handful to my Agapanthus, but it was just in a plain white paperbag without a name on it. Just lightblue little perls. I'm sorry that I can't provide you with the name :(


I agree with you Al normally I'm not a big fan of orange in the garden too, but blue and orange is a very good looking combination!
Btw you are very lucky with your always blooming Agaphanthus! I'm thinking about dividing mine too now. Yes please post us a picture of yours on your blog!

I've posted my first comment already yesterday as well and it came back to me as not deliverable. But I can't say it horrified me ;-) Blogger has some strange problems sometimes, but they never last for long.

Alice said...

Marion - obviously my comment of yesterday went the same way as Sigrun's and Carol's.

I have Abutilon growing out in the garden all year round. We get approx. 30 frosts per year with many of them getting down to -4ºC and the occasional one even lower. The Abutilon haven't suffered at all; in fact they continue to flower almost all year round. As you live not far from the water perhaps your frosts are not too severe to have them outside?

Maggie Ann said...

That picture is amazing!

MariaJ said...

VERY FUNNY! The roots really look like a pot!
How are you feeling now dear Marion? Hope the sun will give you extra energy and all the pain will disappear.

Garden girl said...

marion that is ioncredible that shape to be so perfect like the pot it was in!!! Ok your agapanthus had a good excuse for not growing so why are mine dying? they are in the ground doing well one minute the next keeling over and dying! no excuses here!! lol

Kerri said...

What an interesting story Marion and great pictures to describe the problem. My hubby and I were looking at the first picture, thinking it was the pot! I hope you have some success with your agas now. I've never tried this plant. Must look into it.
Do hope you're feeling better now and that the warmth of the new season will give you renewed health and no pain!!

Val said...

Thanks for propelling me into dividing my agapanthus (blue and white). I give bits to people, and they do well, but mind dont..probably because I dont divide them!! There roots weren't quite as bad as yours, but nearly. At least I had straight sided pots :o)

I have two abutilon megapotamicum outside against a sheltered wall, they do very well. I can layer long thin branches, they root very well to make new plants. I have an ordinary one, Kentish Belle, in a pot and that comes in somewhere warmer for the winter usually.