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I'm buying a Christmas tree to grow in a pot year round and thinking about how I'll keep it healthy in the long run. The tree needs to be pruned to keep a height of 5 feet ( 150cm ) and I'm thinking of buying a fast growing fir. Would putting the tree in an airpot inside a decorative box work long term to promote a healthy root system?

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Well you can try it if you like, but most conifers tend not to produce a long taproot (with the exception of Pine, or Pinus varieties) so there doesn't seem to be much advantage in using an airpot. Conifers are not listed as suitable plants for growing in airpot containers. Using one won't mean you can keep it in a pot for longer anyway (see other question and answer).

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  • Are you sure? The conifer conservation programme at Edinburgh Botanical Gardens use air-pots in their tunnel – Nic Nov 28 '16 at 2:26
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    @Nic Maybe they're pines, but I checked the Airpot website, where they have information on what to grow in them - shrubs and trees were mentioned, but no mention of coniferous trees. Most conifers produce lots of fibrous roots anyway and aren't deeprooted, but you could contact the manufacturer, as they're in Scotland anyway – Bamboo Nov 28 '16 at 2:28
  • You can keep almost any conifer tree in a pot as an extra large bonsai, if you tend it tediously and root prune on a regular basis. You don't need an airpot, but it's far more work than most people can afford – J. Musser Dec 1 '16 at 0:07
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The air pot will prevent root circling, and should encourage radial root growth, so this will make root maintenance a lot easier for you. Taking the tree out for repotting will also be much easier as you can just undo the screws to remove it from the pot when you want to prune any dead roots, and replace the soil.

This person has planted a noble fir in his air-pot.

conifer in air-pot

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