Recently I received a package of pot inserts from Jeff at Kianga, the company that makes the Ups-A-Daisy planter inserts. What a great product! Basically, it slips inside large pots and makes a false bottom so that you need less soil and thus make the pot lighter.
The Ups-A-Daisy inserts are orange, rigid plastic, disks designed to fit snuggly inside your pot. The inserts are available in 10″ diameter thru 18″ diameter, on 1″ increments. You want the insert to sit about half way down the pot, so you just measure the diameter of your pot at about the middle point, and that’s the size of insert to use. They couldn’t be easier to use, you literally hold the disk over the pot, drop it in, and you’re ready to plant up your pot.
A lot of people recommend using packing peanuts to take up room in the bottom of a large pot. But when I work with clients’ pots where they have done this, I’ve noticed that dirt eventually works its way down and acts like mortar. When I dump out the dirt and try and remove the styrofoam, it usually has formed a large plug at the bottom of the pot, and not surprisingly, the dirt in the pot tends to be waterlogged. Not good!
What is nice about the Ups-A-Daisy inserts is that they just raise the bottom of the pot. The inserts have holes in them, so water drains through the insert and then falls down to the bottom of the pot and drains out there.
To test out the inserts for myself, I used them while repotting my peach tree. It is in a really tall pot that has more dirt that the tree currently needs. As Gen of North Coast Gardening has explained, pots that are larger than the plant needs have more moisture in the dirt than the plant can take in, which can lead to the roots rotting.
Before freshening the dirt I repotted the peach with the old dirt and the insert in place so that I could see how much less dirt would be used. Look at how much dirt was left over! And you can imagine how much easier this pot was to move around afterwards…
I threw in this 4-inch nursery pot to show scale.
- Easy to use. No directions needed, the product is entirely self explanatory.
- Less soil needed, which reduces a pot’s overall cost and increases plant health.
- Makes your pots lighter and easier to move.
- Inexpensive. The 10 inch insert is only $4.99.
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