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Tree Lilies - can’t take them out of overcrowded pot

This is the third year tree lilies that grow in a pot. There were only three of them and they were doing fine. But this year a million of small lilies appeared and the pot now seems really overcrowded so I started worrying that they won’t flower this year. 

However I can’t take any of them out as the pot is kind of a round shape, so the top is more narrow than the middle.

And to make the matter worse, there is a young peony plant growing at the edge - last autumn it looked so dead so I just stuck it in the first available  pot as I didn’t expect it to survive. Well it did survive and actually already has the first flower bud. 

What is the best thing to do with that overcrowded pot? I can’t be the only one this ever happened to, right? 😅
Surrey

Posts

  • ObelixxObelixx Vendée, Western FrancePosts: 27,600
    Options:

    1.  Break the pot.  Free the plants and re-pot with more space.
    2.  Water the pot to soak it thoroughly and use an old bread knife to liberate the peony by cutting all round it to include some root. Then use the bread knife to saw up and down the sides of the pot, sticking as close to the rim as possible to loosen the central core of compost and roots.   Separate out the individual tree lilies and re-pot but don't overcrowd.

    For future pot purchases, either buy them with straight sides or sloping sides so the top is a bit wider than the base or else re-pot every year so you don't have to butcher roots to get plants out.
    "We don't stop playing because we grow old; we grow old because we stop playing." - George Bernard Shaw
  • Thanks @Obelixx

    Shall I do it now or wait for the autumn. I would be too worried to damage the plants and lose this year’s flowers. 

    I wouldn’t want to break the pot - I really like it and it was a gift (so not bought by choice). 
    Surrey
  • ObelixxObelixx Vendée, Western FrancePosts: 27,600
    Do it now while things are actively growing and likely to recover or else wait till it's all gone dormant in autumn but then you'll need to do lots of feeding and watering to keep things happy if cramped.
    "We don't stop playing because we grow old; we grow old because we stop playing." - George Bernard Shaw
  • I feed and water them a lot anyway (which is probably why they multiplied like crazy 😅) so probably will go for the late autumn option... Hopefully I will be able to save some of the new lilies and plant them somewhere else 🤞
    They are lovely huge tree lilies, I wouldn’t mind more of those, but not potted anymore 😅😅
    Surrey
  • JennyJJennyJ DoncasterPosts: 6,120
    See if you can find an ordinary plant pot with the same depth and rim diameter as your ceramic one, which you can plant up and pop inside for next year. If you had several you could easily change the planting seasonally, if you wanted. Alternatively just use it for short-term bedding plants that you change every year.
  • JennyJ said:
    See if you can find an ordinary plant pot with the same depth and rim diameter as your ceramic one, which you can plant up and pop inside for next year. If you had several you could easily change the planting seasonally, if you wanted. Alternatively just use it for short-term bedding plants that you change every year.
    Good idea. The pot is really not very practical, so I might just use it as a decorative pot. And tree lilies probably will be better off in the ground if they keep having babies every  year 😄
    Surrey
  • B3B3 Posts: 21,501
    edited April 2021
    I feel your pain or the pain you'll have trying to get them out.
    I've done battle with a bay tree and a fern so far.
    I think the trick must be to get them out the year before they really need it.  But how do you know???
    In London. Keen but lazy.
  • JennyJJennyJ DoncasterPosts: 6,120
    I suspect lots of us have done something similar with those nice curvy pots - I know I have.
  • B3 said:
    I feel your pain or the pain you'll have trying to get them out.
    I've done battle with a bay tree and a fern so far.
    I think the trick must be to get them out the year before they really need it.  But how do you know???
    Exactly! They didn’t grow a single baby plant for three seasons, but this year there is suddenly almost two dozens of them. And the peony that not only decided not to die, but rather went for a growth spurt 😅
    I’m thinking I will wait for all of them to go completely dormant, then soak the soil in the pot until it’s soft and scoop it out layer by layer. Hoping for the best...
    Surrey
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