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Japanese Maple

Gers
Gers Posts: 11,999 Forumite
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A friend has sent me a present of a very small and bare Japanese Maple in a pot. How do I deal with this please? It's a gift in memory of my late DM from her oldest and closest friend so I want to give it proper attention. 
Any advice please? Thanks. 

Comments

  • Farway
    Farway Posts: 13,178 Forumite
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    edited 10 December 2021 at 11:01AM
    First thing to bear in mind it is not an indoor plant, it needs to be outside

    Make sure the pot has drainage holes & is not just some decorative sort. If no holes makes some or repot it

    Not knowing where you live but I'd dunk the pot in a bucket of water, just in case it's been in a shop and has dried out the compost. Once bubbles cease, remove from bucket and let it drain freely

    Then place it outside in a very sheltered spot, got a cold frame or open porch maybe?

    As it's winter there will be no growth until Spring so don't panic.
    In the meantime consider where you will plant or place this tree, it likes dappled shade and not bakinf but there's plenty of time to think about it, for instance stay in a pot with constant watering required

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  • Mojisola
    Mojisola Posts: 35,556 Forumite
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    Does it have a label?  There's a massive range of Japanese Maples - you need to know whether it's going to stay small or need a lot of space, and whether it's going to be very tender or fairly tough. 
    The one thing most of them hate is cold winds and being exposed to Spring frosts when the buds are opening. 

  • Gers
    Gers Posts: 11,999 Forumite
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    The label says 'Acer palmatum Beni-Maiko'.  It's arrived fully water and the pot is the normal black plastic about 5 or 6cm wide.

    No cold frame but I can leave it in my small outside barn with the door open. We do get cold winds and the odd Spring frost but being in the barn should protect it.


  • twopenny
    twopenny Posts: 5,488 Forumite
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    I'd pop it in a terracotta pot just an inch or two wider than the current one with John innes compost no.3
    Tease the roots out a little with your fingers as they will be going round and round the plastic pot.
    Press the compost down firmly.
    If it's going to be in the barn you could wrap some bubble wrap around the pot to keep it from freezing.

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  • RAS
    RAS Posts: 32,611 Forumite
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    edited 10 December 2021 at 1:42PM
    The RHS website would be a good starting point. It appears to be compact and very highly coloured most of the year. If I recall, you're in quite an exposed spot, so it needs somewhere relatively sheltered where it doesn't clash with other plants. It'll liven up an otherwise green/grey border. 
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  • Gers
    Gers Posts: 11,999 Forumite
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    twopenny said:
    I'd pop it in a terracotta pot just an inch or two wider than the current one with John innes compost no.3
    Tease the roots out a little with your fingers as they will be going round and round the plastic pot.
    Press the compost down firmly.
    If it's going to be in the barn you could wrap some bubble wrap around the pot to keep it from freezing.
    Will do that - thanks.
    RAS said:
    The RHS website would be a good starting point. It appears to be compact and very highly coloured most of the year. If I recall, you're in quite an exposed spot, so it needs somewhere relatively sheltered where it doesn't clash with other plants. It'll liven up an otherwise green/grey border. 

    Yes, I'm in a very exposed spot.  I wish this friend had asked me before sending this particular plant, even if I really appreciate her intentions.
  • twopenny
    twopenny Posts: 5,488 Forumite
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    edited 10 December 2021 at 8:28PM
    Just found when sorting out my papers - Protect from wet in winter - plant out in spring.
    My neighbour grows one for her dad in a pot. However it is sheltered and in the west country so mild by others standards.
    Yes, people have good intentions but not as far as asking before presenting
    If you wanted to you could always phone them up and ask how best to care for it in your exposed spot because it is so lovely etc ;)


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  • wort
    wort Posts: 1,666 Forumite
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    I have mine in pots, they like woodland conditions , so ericaceous soil and not in full sun in the mornings. As the leaves scorch if there is dew on them . But it's an easy plant . Doesn't need cutting back or any thing.
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