I'm sitting on a balcony at the Park Plaza hotel in Winter Park, Florida. It's not one of those pricey boutique joints where you pay three times as much for a small Euro style room and crappy service Nope, this place is a real gem! I read about it in Garden & Gun magazine, and for about the price of a Hampton, you get a real "old school" hotel experience.
I'm surrounded by hanging ferns, palms, and Bougainvillea, all overgrown and random, but somehow working as a whole. The mostly tropical plants frame the narrow balcony that hangs over the brick lined Park Ave. It makes for a perfect vantage point for people watching: funny and surreal at the same time. But it's 5 o'clock on a Friday, I have a cold beer in hand, and it's about all I could ask for. Okay, so maybe a little fragrance would be nice.
Just recently I started fielding a lot of questions about whether Eucalyptus trees would do well in pots on decks, patios and such. A lot of the inquiries are from folks who have discovered the elegant trees but live in parts of the country where it's just too cold to put them in the ground. Others are from the lower South, where the trees will thrive in the ground, but they want to be closer to the great fragrance and have access to the trees outstanding foliage.
So focused on proving cold hardiness in Southern Eucs, I never thought about how beautiful, fragrant, and functional these trees are when put in a great pot for easy access and for all to enjoy. When the trees roots get to the edge of the pot and are encircled, the tree's legendary growth rate is stunted. No issues with health and happiness, just a smaller version of a great tree!