Do potted "indoor" JM need any supplemental water?

Discussion in 'Maples' started by copperbeech, Jan 17, 2021.

  1. copperbeech

    copperbeech Active Member

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    I have stored potted maples in our unheated garage for a few years and it has been my routine to provide a touch "water" (in the form of snow/ice) around the base of the tree a few times during the winter. But given that these trees are (fully?) dormant does one need to give them any moisture??
     
  2. Acerholic

    Acerholic Esteemed Contributor Forums Moderator VCBF Cherry Scout Maple Society

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    Good afternoon copperbeech, I check my covered potted maples weekly and if the pot feels light I give them a small drink. Yes they are dormant but if they were outside in the ground they would get watered naturally when it rains.
     
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  3. copperbeech

    copperbeech Active Member

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    Thanks for the reply but I guess this leads to the question....why do "dormant" maples (specifically indoor) maples, need water at all during the cold dark winter?
     
    Last edited: Jan 17, 2021
  4. Sulev

    Sulev Active Member

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    Trees still need to maintain certain water content, despite being fully dormant. Evaporation of water from tissues may go on even when trees are almost stopped their activities.
    Plants that are adapted to drought-induced dormancy, may need less water than those adapted to winter dormancy.
     
    Last edited: Jan 17, 2021
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  5. AlainK

    AlainK Generous Contributor Forums Moderator Maple Society 10 Years

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    Right. "Dormant" doesn't mean "dead" : if you don't water a plant, it just dries out and the tissues can't recover. Even the cactuses in a desert need water. They get it mainly from the small percentage of humidity in the air during the night, they've developed strategies to survive. But maples in the open grow in a moist soil where the roots give them most of the water they need.

    The amount of water needed varies according to the temperature and % of humidity in your garage. I would let the top 1 or 2 cm (half an inch, one inch) dry before watering sparingly. My 2 € cents worth ;-)
     
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  6. Acerholic

    Acerholic Esteemed Contributor Forums Moderator VCBF Cherry Scout Maple Society

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    Both replies hit the hail on the head, I can't add anything other than I water mine a 'little' every Winter and they all do well.
     
  7. emery

    emery Renowned Contributor Maple Society 10 Years

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    Just to pile on, :) I remember Yano-san talking about the importance of dormant potted maples getting water in winter, in the greenhouse. I believe his advice was to water sparingly, about every month.

    I keep most potted maples out of the winter rain, in a sort of unheated stable. I water a these couple of times during the winter.
     
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  8. 0soyoung

    0soyoung Well-Known Member

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    All trees, maples included, have little openings called lenticels, though which gas is exchanged. Principally, oxygen is let in to maintain life. Of course, when the tree is dormant the oxygen demand is quite low, but moisture also finds its way out via the lenticels. With inadequate moisture on the roots, the tree can desiccate.


    Now, does somebody have the ball and is this rugby or American football? ;-)
     
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