The Q&A Archives: Another Recommendation Request

Question: Please - Can you recommend a tree for my terrace, a deciduous tree to be planted in a large container that will get plenty of sun but also plenty of wind. My preference is for a tree with really FULL foliage that will grow 8'or 10' but not more than 12'.

Answer: You might be able to use one of the smaller varieties of crabapple or a small weeping ornamental cherry in your plan, but you need to be aware that the larger the tree or shrub the larger the container needs to be. And the longer you keep it growing, the more stressed the plant will be so it may not reach a larger size successfully. I am not sure it is realistic to look for something of that size to thrive in a container unless it is more like a tree planter used in commercial scaled spaces -- which would be extremely heavy on a terrace. It is also inevitably so stressful for woody plants that you may be replacing the plant every year or two. Winter survival in particular can be especially difficult in a windy location due to the plants drying out -- as well as the effects of cold and freeze/thaw problems with the roots. I'm sorry I can't be more encouraging, it is always fun to experiment and see what happens in any case. You might also want to look at a book or two about gardening in containers with a wide range of plants. One I would recommend is Container Gardening for Dummies by Bill Marken, ISBN 0-7645-5057-8. In it you will find plant lists of all kinds, discussions of potting, watering, fertilizing and maintenance, as well as many useful tips for keeping your plants healthy and happy. Good luck with your project!

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