Plants of Tasmania Nursery

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Institute for Healthy Communities Australia Limited

Garden Hardiness and Pot Suitability Ratings

After most plants listed in the botanical lists there is the letter G, and the letter P, each followed by numbers, ranging from 1 to 10. The letter G stands for garden hardiness, and the letter P for suitability as a pot plant.

High numbers for G (ie. garden) indicate a plant that we consider to be hardy and reliable when planted in a suitable position, low numbers indicate a plant that may be less reliable, may need extra care in positioning, or in other words, might be a bit of a challenge. A rating with a wide middle spread, eg. G3-7, indicates either a plant that performs well in some gardens but not in others, or one that we don’t yet have an extensive knowledge of as a garden plant.

The rating with regard to pot culture, P, relates more to how easily one can present the plant in the pot over a period of time. It takes into account how much effort and care is required to have the plant looking good. A high maintenance plant, requiring regular trimming, fertilizing or repotting, will not score as highly as one which presents nicely without much attention. For example, a plant that will survive well in a pot, but quickly look straggly, will have a lower rating.

Example - The Pandani, Richea pandanifolia is not so easy to grow in the garden, requiring a well-composted, well-drained, moist and cool position. I would suggest a garden hardiness rating of G 2-6. However we have found it to be very reliable in a pot, even withstanding considerable drying out, and not requiring much attention, so its pot suitability rating could be P 6-9.

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