No stem or branch growth every year

Discussion in 'Maples' started by cthenn, Mar 7, 2017.

  1. cthenn

    cthenn Active Member

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    Bay Area
    Hello, I am wondering if someone can help me figure out why many of my maples (in containers) do not seem to be growing. Every year, the plants will put out leafage, some years better than others, but there is hardly any growth, or branching at all. I've attached a picture which demonstrates this. You can see some good stem and branch growth from years prior, but then in the past 3 or 4 years, not much has happened. What I end up with is very short, stubby shoots from each year's "growth".

    As background, usually every year I will pull the plants out of the pots, check the roots, and move them around a bit in their soil. If it looks like they need a bigger pot, I will transplant. The only thing I don't really do is fertilize very much. Maybe some fish emulsion once in a while, but usually just water. Perhaps in a container, I need to be more proactive in fertilization. If the belief is that is the problem, which fertilizer is good for container maples?

    EDIT; I see there is an entire thread on container fertilization, so that part of my question can be skipped, thanks.

    Thanks for any advice!

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  2. AlainK

    AlainK Active Member Forums Moderator Maple Society

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    nr Orléans, France (E.U.)
    Firstly, I'd ask "What maples?..." Some species, or cultivars have very short internodes, so whether you grow them in your garden or in a pot, there won't be much difference.

    Secondly, what kind of soil mix are you using?
    0soyoung likes this.
  3. Jaybee63

    Jaybee63 Active Member Maple Society

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    Fareham, UK
    I was in the same situation last year, hence the post.
    I ended up using Osmocote 6 month tablets Osmocote® Controlled Release Plant Food Tablets | Love The Garden
    Fertilised with the tablets early spring as coming into growth. Used on the low dose recommendation and pleased with the results. Good natural growth with a lot more leaf on plants that had become stagnant with growth, despite repotting and root pruning every 3 years.
    No leggy growth either, so pleased with the results and will be using again.

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