Maid of Orleans pot size and growth rate?

bramasole(8 Texas)May 3, 2008

Hi everyone,

I bought a MOO last fall that I am in love with and am very eager to see grow and flower. It was about 5" tall and had one main stem, came in a 4" pot. I put it in a pot that is a giant teacup, 10" wide and 7" deep - it has a saucer glued to the bottom. I kept it inside for a few weeks but it was very unhappy with yellowing leaves that started getting wholes in them. So... I put it outside where it overwintered fine, no new growth, basically stopped in time. Now it looks healthy, it has 2 new stems and new leaves, but it seems to be growing at an excruciatingly slow rate. It is about 7" tall. It is sharing the pot with some dianthus planted this winter, and the pot is on a south facing balcony that gets 10-12 hours of sun a day in spring/summer.

My questions are mainly:

1) Is the pot big enough for it? If so, when should I repot it and to what size pot?

2) How fast should it be growing, and when should I expect it to flower?

3) Is the fact the pot has a saucer glued to the bottom a problem?

Thanks so much for any tips, I am looking forward to doing anything I can to increase my chances of seeing it thrive.

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quinnfyre(z7 PA)

I have a feeling that a. it doesn't want to share a pot and b. the pot is in fact too big.

I have a Maid of Orleans, in a pot about 6 inches in diameter, and about 5.5 inches high. It is about a foot tall, lots of new growth, and budding. I haven't found it to be a slow grower at all. And in the past, I have had one about a foot and a half tall, and about a foot across, very bushy, in a 6 inch pot (though it probably should have been repotted.)

So, a couple questions: is it getting direct sun on the balcony? and what have the temps been like? I was under the impression that they suffer at temps under 50 degrees F.

If it were me, I would give it its own pot, about 6 inches, and keep an eye on the watering (don't let it dry out completely for too long, but let it get dry-ish before watering again). When it starts to get over a foot tall and full, that's when I'd start thinking about moving the next size up, an 8 inch pot.

When it is happy, it blooms pretty much all the time. Winter, summer, and in between. The key is good light, and not letting it get crispy - yes, I am an underwaterer... whoops : )

The one I had in the past grew really well outside, and overwintered pretty well inside, but succumbed to mites when I moved and stressed it out. The one I have now has never been outside, and is growing under lights, and seems to enjoy it. It currently has about 16 buds, which seem to have popped up since I increased the wattage on my light from 11W to 25W (compact fluorescents). So you can definitely overwinter it inside if you like... just keep a close watch for mites.

Anyway, my thinking is that it needs a more proportionate pot, and maybe it's been too cold for it to perform at its best. So once the weather starts warming up, staying in the 75-85 deg range (including night temps), it will probably take off. I've also heard that they either don't like fertilizer, or do well with bloom booster fertilizer (higher middle number, such as 10-54-10). My direct experience has been the latter; bloom booster on my outdoor jasmine produced lots of flowers, and good plant growth too.

Well, that's my opinion, hope it helps!

    Bookmark   May 4, 2008 at 10:16PM
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bramasole(8 Texas)

Hi quinnfyre, thank you so much for the wonderful advice! Finding more space is challenging in my balcony, but I do happen to have an empty 6" pot just sitting there, so I am very excited to move it there! I also happen to only have one kind of fertilizer, and that's bloom booster, so I will be trying that too.

It does get direct sun on the balcony, but maybe its growth has been slow because I let it spend the winter outside. However, our temps have been around 65-70 at night, and 80-85 in the daytime!

So, I'll be transferring it to the 6" terracota by the end of the week and start it on the bloombooster... Although, should I use that full strength if I am using MG soil to pot it in? I wouldn't want to overfertilize, so maybe I'll dilute the bloombooster to 30-50% strength. Thanks so much again! I can't wait to help it thrive and put out wonderful smelling blooms =)

    Bookmark   May 5, 2008 at 1:18AM
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bramasole(8 Texas)

Hi quinnfyre,

I just wanted to say thanks again for your advice. I did exactly as you said, moving her to a 6" terracota pot and feeding with MG bloombooster once a week... And look at her before and after! She has 3 growth points (the stems at 6, 9, and 12 o' clock; only the one at 3 o'clock was there before)!!! I am beside myself with joy. She has a tiny new growth point starting and I have a feeling she will be putting out blooms soon!

Thanks so much...

Before moving her (she is made up of only one stem):

After your advice, with new growth:

Only the bigger stem to the right existed before your advice, she looked like a twig.

Isn't she beautiful now? :)

    Bookmark   June 1, 2008 at 8:29PM
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