Dogwoods are beautiful trees with striking spring flowers. They are impressive trees to have around, but not every gardener has the space or the means to take care of a large tree. Other gardeners may not live in a zone warm enough to overwinter a dogwood outside. With some skill and attention, though, you can keep a dogwood tree in a container. Keep reading to learn more about caring for potted dogwood trees.
Can I Grow Dogwood in a Container?
Can I grow dogwood in a container? Technically, yes, it’s possible, but there are certain requirements to be met, and it’s not for the casual gardener. Dogwood trees have very dense, fast-growing root systems that are less than ideal for container growing. They also need extremely well-draining soil, but at the same time, the plants need lots of water, particularly in the first few years of life. Containers dry out quickly, so you’ll probably have to mulch heavily and water it every day or so.
How to Grow Dogwoods in a Container
When growing dogwood trees in pots, it’s important to give the roots plenty of room. This means you should opt for as big of a container as you can manage. Even so, you’ll want to remove the tree from its container to prune the roots back on occasion to keep it from becoming root bound. Again, container grown dogwoods will require plenty of moisture, so you’ll have to water the tree frequently. You can also add a bit of mulch to the top of the soil, which should help it retain some of that moisture. Caring for potted dogwood trees in the winter is also tricky. The plants need cold temperatures in order to go dormant during the winter. If you want to bring it inside, it’s best to put it somewhere protected but unheated, like a shed or a garage.
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The only child of a horticulturist and an English teacher, Liz Baessler was destined to become a gardening editor. She has been with Gardening Know how since 2015, and a Senior Editor since 2020. She holds a BA in English from Brandeis University and an MA in English from the University of Geneva, Switzerland. After years of gardening in containers and community garden plots, she finally has a backyard of her own, which she is systematically filling with vegetables and flowers.
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