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Feeding fatsia

KathmKathm Posts: 19

I have several fatsia growing in pots and the biggest is now living in a large garbage bin!  (It was much cheaper :D than a large ‘tree’ pot and its handles make it easier to move too.)

I have drilled holes in the bin - so it drains freely, but it is starting to look quite ‘pale’. I was wondering if - given it’s size - I now need to feed it.  If so, what with - tomato feed, or something else?  I would hate to kill it with the wrong option. 

thanks for any guidance.  Kath


  • punkdocpunkdoc Posts: 14,339
    When you say drilled holes, how big, how many are there, a pot that size will need some serious drainage?
    How can you lie there and think of England
    When you don't even know who's in the team

    S.Yorkshire/Derbyshire border
  • PlantmindedPlantminded Posts: 2,735
    Fatsia prefer a shady location.  In too much sun the leaves will often yellow and turn downwards, showing the plant is struggling.  Another consideration is the compost you have used.  A soil based compost like John Innes No 3 is best for shrubs in containers.  You may find that a foliar feed of seaweed extract will also perk your plant up.  I wouldn't use tomato feed - its better for plants which need encouragement to flower.
    Wirral. Sandy, free draining soil.

  • AstroAstro Posts: 418
    Is there a reason for them being in  containers? They are easy plants in the ground and very hardy. As pointed out they do better in shade.
  • JennyJJennyJ Posts: 9,565
    I agree, it would be much happier in the ground and it would fill that corner and reach the top of the fence within a few years.
    As others have said, they're better not in full sun all day, but they will take some sun. Mine is on the East-facing side of the house so it gets sun until maybe 2:30 or 3pm at midsummer, and it's quite happy. It was there when we bought the house in 1988 and is still going strong.
    Doncaster, South Yorkshire. Soil type: sandy, well-drained
  • Nanny BeachNanny Beach Posts: 8,586
    Agree with other posters, they really thrive in shade,and better in the ground.
  • KathmKathm Posts: 19
    Thanks @punkdoc, @Plantminded, @Astro, @JennyJ - my fatsia usually live on the decking next to the shadier part of the house, but I am about to get paving laid there and some other landscape work carried out, so I only moved it into that corner a couple of days ago to free up space for the workers.  

    I have cleared my borders of loads of plants which I had put into the wrong place over the years and will be getting lots of conifer/ivy stumps ground out, so hopefully will have many more planting options once that is done. It probably will end up getting planted permanently into that corner.  I am trying to reduce the amount of pots I need to water.  

    It’s been in that bin for a couple of years, so will give it some seaweed extract in the meantime, so it can make the most of its little holiday out in the wide open.     B)
  • FairygirlFairygirl Posts: 53,924
    It'll be happier in the ground  :)
    The soil in the container may not have much nutrition left in it, so the aforementioned seaweed can be useful until you plant it out. They're not terribly deep rooting - they have spreading roots, so it might even be a bit pot bound. 
    However, a bit of bleached foliage won't harm it long term. A damper, shadier spot is always best for them, with some reasonably good soil. They can take a reasonable bit of sun if they're happy below ground, but searing mid day sun isn't ideal.
    You can always cut it back too, which often invigorates them  :)
    It's a place where beautiful isn't enough of a word....

    I live in west central Scotland - not where that photo is...
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