What time of year is best to 'pot-up' with blueberries?

edweather(Zone 5a/b Central NY)August 28, 2012

I have several blueberry bushes that are about to outgrow their pots. They are growing well now and putting out new growth. We have several weeks of growing season left. Should I pot-up now or wait until spring? I have the pots and mix available, and I was thinking that since I will be overwintering my northern varieties outdoors, larger pots might protect the roots better during the winter. Thanks. Ed.

Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo
Noogy(6 sw mi)

Ed,
I'd wait till spring, when you can unwind any roots and get it fresh out of dormancy. Also, in case there's extra N, you wont flush out new growth. Keep them watered a little bit.

Another school of thought would be focusing on establishing roots this fall in low nitrogen soil, watering them less frequently, letting them slow down and harden off.
I've had 0% loss out of 800 making sure that the soil freezes moist but not wet. Shelter them from drying winds from the North.
Snow accumulation is good.
Attached garages in the cold area is good, but then you need to water them monthly. I prefer them cold outside.
Noogy

    Bookmark   August 28, 2012 at 7:08PM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo
edweather(Zone 5a/b Central NY)

Thanks. Yeah, I tried the attached garage thing last year and we had such a warm winter that they woke up way to early, and I got worn out moving them in and out. I'd like to try the outside this time. Snow accumulation we have...over 100 inches on average. The only question I have is on the "north" side thing. I've read several threads on over wintering, and they all say to put them on a warm wall on the north side of a building. I just assumed it was to keep the sun from hitting the containers. We definitely get a blast from the north and west all winter. My sheltered side would be the east side of our house. I actually have the perfect spot to put them on the east side, but it would get big dose of morning sun. Would that be ok?

    Bookmark   August 29, 2012 at 1:06AM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo
edweather(Zone 5a/b Central NY)

OK, I read your post again, and I think you mean that the north side is ok, but to make sure the containers don't dry out from the wind, and that snow accumulation is good for that. Right?

    Bookmark   August 29, 2012 at 1:21AM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo
Bradybb(wa8)

100 inches of snow,Ed?Wow,that's a lot!Yes,snow is actually a good insulator. Brady

    Bookmark   August 29, 2012 at 2:00AM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo
Noogy(6 sw mi)

Ed,
It all comes down to the level of snow, as Brady said, not only as an insulator but a reflector. I guess all the sun on the pots could be an issue, but I haven't observed that effect. I suspect that if they have the moisture in the rootzone, they stay relatively frozen.
Also, if they're on the north side of the building it dips to -25, + winds with no snow cover, I suspect you'd have a bunch of dessicated twigs.
Anybody see any factors we may have overlooked?

    Bookmark   August 29, 2012 at 4:23PM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo
edweather(Zone 5a/b Central NY)

Thanks for the responses guys. Let me think about this for a while longer. Still have a couple of months to make a decision. I could always start them on the east side, and if I'm worried about anything, I could always move them, or visa versa. We actually average about 140" of snow per year. We're in the snow belt north of Syracuse. Syracuse averages 110".

    Bookmark   August 30, 2012 at 12:46AM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo
franktank232(z5 WI)

With that much snow, you could leave containers outside buried in it...

    Bookmark   August 30, 2012 at 9:23AM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo
blueboy1977(TX9A/B)

Hey Ed, don't know if it helps you but I just potted up several plants from 2 gallon pots to 7 gallon pots in the last month and have seen no negative effects. It's been 95 degrees + also. As long as the roots don't get torn up in the process I think you can do it any time.

    Bookmark   August 30, 2012 at 9:46PM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo
edweather(Zone 5a/b Central NY)

Thanks blueboy1977. I'll probably do a couple of them also early next week. The two that need it the most, and wait until spring for the rest. I can't see how it would do any harm to give roots some breathing room. We only have a few weeks left of growing season, but the containers won't freeze for several months yet.

    Bookmark   August 31, 2012 at 1:09AM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo
Noogy(6 sw mi)

Ed,
I realized I have a sun blocker for my 8" pots. Its the cap used on pole building roofs, where the seam meets, up top. I have some I bent 90degrees in 12' sections, where the pot can sit on it, and the other side shades it.

    Bookmark   September 3, 2012 at 1:12PM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo
edweather(Zone 5a/b Central NY)

Just wanted to share a photo of the Blue Ray blueberry bush in it's final home. Half of a 55 gallon drum.

    Bookmark   September 17, 2012 at 8:17PM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo
blueboy1977(TX9A/B)

Sweet move Ed!!! I've got 3 of those 55 gallon drums that I'm going to cut in half too. I just havent figured out which plants are going into them. Im thinking some rabbit eyes and a few of the bigger SHB varieties.

    Bookmark   September 17, 2012 at 8:38PM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo
edweather(Zone 5a/b Central NY)

Blueboy, thanks. I have 3 drums also, and only cut one so far. I put my 2 oldest plants in the halfs. There's probably a million ways to cut the drums but I used an old hand saw. It went through like butter. They're heavy, but I use a light weight mix, and 2 people can move them fairly easily.

    Bookmark   September 18, 2012 at 12:55PM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo
blueboy1977(TX9A/B)

10-4 Ed, I like the rope handles you put on there too. I didnt even think about doing that.

    Bookmark   September 18, 2012 at 2:28PM
Sign Up to comment
More Discussions
mango seed ..is it dead?
The Whole outside of it is black .. Is it dead? I looked...
Trisha Stewart
Is it just me or have my plum tree buds gotten bigger lately?
I have a bruce plum tree that i planted last september. It...
tlbean2004
Hardy Peach Tree; Recommendations?
I am new to peach trees. I bought a Reliance three...
mark_roeder
Propagating Muscadine vine
How long do I leave them in the frig? How do you propagate...
jolj
3 of my callery pear cuttings now have leaves unfurling?
I took several callery pear tree cuttings on jan 10...
tlbean2004
People viewed this after searching for:
© 2015 Houzz Inc. Houzz® The new way to design your home™