A recent addition to a friend’s very sunny, hot roof garden here in NYC, it appeared to be potbound so it was moved to a larger container. I am concerned about the way the leaves are curling in on themselves. Does this mean too much sun? It is otherwise healthy- well-watered in all this heat. I have seen it growing on the High Line with no shade whatsoever… was told it would thrive in this location, so am puzzled. What does anyone think? I love this tree-don’t want to lose it-
With all this heat this is a tough time to try to get a new plant established; especially in full sun. Make sure the container is well mulched. If it is possible to temporarily give it some shade (by moving the container or using shade cloth) until it gets established in its new container, I would try that. Keep in mind that in the wild Cercis canadensis typically grows in light shade.
If this tree doesn’t make it, you don’t have to give up on the idea completely but buy the replacement tree in late summer/early autumn to get it well established before being exposed to full sun in the summer heat. Also in full sun it is important to make sure the container is large enough to contain the soil needed to hold enough water for a heavily perspiring tree. (I’m pretty sure the high line trees are not in containers- I can’t remember if any of the plants up there are in containers it has been a while since I last visited…)
I didn’t know that it prefers light shade- I bought it at NYBG, and I asked about cultural needs, and the person thought it would be fine on the roof. I will rig something up to protect it. The container that it was transferred to has never dried out, even in this heat wave, so I’ve been assuming that it is large enough for the tree- maybe not. Thanks for your help.
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Welcome! I’m Margaret Roach, a leading garden writer for 25 years—at ‘Martha Stewart Living,’ ‘Newsday,’ and in three books. I host a public-radio podcast; I also lecture, plus hold tours at my 2.3-acre Hudson Valley (NY) Zone 5B garden, and always say no to chemicals and yes to great plants.