Aesculus in clay soil, is it viable?

Discussion in 'Plants: Science and Cultivation' started by monicasanchez, Sep 7, 2020.

  1. monicasanchez

    monicasanchez Active Member Maple Society

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    Good Morning.

    I have this Aesculus since 7 years ago. Now it measures one meter in height without counting the pot, which is large (it measures about 80 centimeters in diameter by about the same height).

    I am aware that it is time to plant the tree in the ground. The problem is that I live in Mallorca (Spain), in the south of the island. The sea is about 4km in a straight line. The soil is clayey, pH 7.5 seems to me, but the water drains quickly.

    Temperatures are around 38 degrees Celsius maximum in August (only if there is a heat wave, otherwise there are 33 degrees), and minimums of up to -1.5 degrees Celsius (only occasionally, in February).

    Do you think it may have any chance of survival? The climate does not worry me much because it is already used to it, but of course, it is not the same to grow a plant in a pot than in the ground ...

    Attached photos. The Aesculus has suffered anthracnose for three years, but it is controlled.

    Thank you very much.

    20200907_091341.jpg
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  2. Acerholic

    Acerholic Esteemed Contributor Forums Moderator VCBF Cherry Scout Maple Society

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    @monicasanchez Good morning to you also Monica. Your soil is very near neutral and the Aesculus is fine in that. Clay is also OK. My only concern is water. This is a very thirsty tree and in times of drought when in the ground can suffer quite badly.
    Even here in England there are several Horse chestnuts that have suffered very badly from the early Spring and later Summer droughts.
    I agree that it is very close to planting time, so if you do go down that route I would think about some sort of watering system to be be put in place.
    The other option of course is to keep it in a pot and go down the Bonsai route. People like @AlainK would be my first port of call for advice here.
    Hope that is of a little help to you Monica.
     
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  3. monicasanchez

    monicasanchez Active Member Maple Society

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    Thank you very much @Acerholic.

    The idea of working it as bonsai ... is ruled out.
    It has very large leaves and I wouldn't know how to reduce their size.

    The truth, I like to think that it can be in the garden, although it is small. But hey, as long as there is an empty hole ...

    Thanks for the advice on installing an irrigation system. By combining frequent watering and fertilizing in summer, I hope it can grow strong and healthy.

    I'll upload photos as soon as it's planted in the garden.

    Regards!
     
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  4. Acerholic

    Acerholic Esteemed Contributor Forums Moderator VCBF Cherry Scout Maple Society

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    @monicasanchez not too near the house then, as it grows so does the very large root system.
    Look forward to seeing it planted, good luck Monica.
     
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  5. AlainK

    AlainK Generous Contributor Forums Moderator Maple Society 10 Years

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    There are lots of them here, big, big ones, and they've all been sick for years : the leaves turn brown very early but they've survived so far.

    There's a variety with red flowers (Aesculus x carnea) it is not frequently seen, but the ones I saw seem to be less prone to fungal diseases.

    It's a bit late now, but if next year the symptoms show early in the season, you can defoliate it totally, and apply some fungicide before new leaves appear. This is a bonsai technique to reduce the size of leaves on established bonsai, but it's not recommended to do it every year.

    It's also better not to leave the leaves on the ground. I used to burn them, but now garden fires are forbidden. That's a pity, I love a fire when the first frosts come, and the ashes are good for the vegetable garden. Anyway, a garden fire once or twice in a year probably produces more CO2 and particles than a plane trip to Ibiza. I suppose... (sarcastic mode on) ^^

    PS : don't tell them but it's a small town, almost no cars in the street after sunset, and the local police goes to bed early. So I might well invite a friend or two, make a bonfire around midnight, with a couple of cans of beer to cheer up ;0)
     
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  6. AlainK

    AlainK Generous Contributor Forums Moderator Maple Society 10 Years

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    Yes, it can. But why don't you plant a Montpellier maple ? It's the Mediterranean maple by excellence. I've never seen any disease or pests on mine, it can be pruned drastically, it backbuds easily. The wounds take a long time to heal, but thjat's not a problem : the wood is very hard and doesn't rot. In France, it can be found around the Mediterranean sea, but further north too, and along the Atlantic coast, so I think it doesn't mind salty winds.

    I already posted photos of this one, a seedling I took back in a yogurt pot from holidays in Périgord some 20 years ago. It is still green and has never been watered this year, it only got some from the nearby trees around. The wall is 3m+ high, and each year (or every two years) I prune it back to 2 metres, 2,50 metres.

    Today :

    acerm._200907a.jpg

    In March 2016, before pruning. The cement bricks are 20 cm high :

    acerm._160326a.jpg

    Montpellier maple is good for you : it will stay green, then turn gold-yellow, and provide shade to your other trees. Get yourself a Montpellier maple ! ;°)
     
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  7. monicasanchez

    monicasanchez Active Member Maple Society

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    Thank you very much @AlainK. Your Montpellier maple is splendid. It seems that it is a better option for a garden.

    There is only one place in my little garden for one more tree, and it is reserved for the Aesculus.

    Thanks also for the advice about anthracnose!

    Regards.
     
  8. monicasanchez

    monicasanchez Active Member Maple Society

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    Hello!

    The tree is already planted in the garden. Today it is expected to rain a lot, so I hope that the rains will help him to better overcome the transplant.

    20200910_135941.jpg
     
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  9. Acerholic

    Acerholic Esteemed Contributor Forums Moderator VCBF Cherry Scout Maple Society

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    @monicasanchez looks good Monica and your cat is already enjoying the shade it gives. Looks like that's going to be its favoured spot in your garden during the Summer. Lol.
    Glad it's raining for you. Very refreshing for your trees and plants.
     
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  10. monicasanchez

    monicasanchez Active Member Maple Society

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    Haha yeah, it looks like he has a new favorite tree.

    Thank you very much.
     
  11. scilover

    scilover Member

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    This plant suitable on light (sandy), medium (loamy) and heavy (clay) soils, prefers well-drained soil and can grow in nutritionally poor soil. So I guess the soil problems are solved.
     
  12. monicasanchez

    monicasanchez Active Member Maple Society

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    It is certainly a joy to know. Thank you.

    For now I have seemed to see the leaves a little yellow, something that had never happened when it was in a pot. It seems that he is happy with the change.
     

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