Winter protection for container trees - Knowledgebase Question

Staten Island, Ne
Question by brazendesign
January 17, 2010
I'm an amateur bonsaist-Staten Island NY, VERY windy, South exposure patio with a lower garden. Conifers ok but I'm worried about my coral-bark maples and young Bald Cypresses. They're all in big planters, not pots, on patio but the soil froze despite protection galore! I could plant in garden below (didn't freeze), but it's infested with dormant aphids and grubs. What can I do? Thanks


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Answer from NGA
January 17, 2010

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Your plants will probably be safer in planters or containers where you can control the soil rather than down in the garden - unless you can simply move the planters down to the garden where it isn't so windy. Plants in containers are susceptible to root freeze unless you provide some protection in the form of insulated blankets (available at Home Depot). You'd need to wrap the sides and the bottoms of the planters for best protection from the elements. As for the wind, is there a way for you to erect a temporary barrier? Two or three stakes attached to the outside of the planter box on which you attach burlap or other material to help buffer the wind would help immensely. Wish I had more suggestions to share. Good luck with your bonsai!

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