Nursery pot sizes are called gallon sizes. You’ll see one-gallon, two-gallon, etc. This can be misleading to gardeners as a one-gallon pot would lead you to believe that the pot would hold one gallon of milk. This is not the case. Gallon is just a term of reference leftover from the days of nurseries growing plants in metal containers.
- 1-gallon (#1) pot for example, can hold 3 quarts of soil yet they are still considered a 1-gallon pot.
- 2-gallon (#2) pot holds 1.5 gallons of soil
- 3-gallon (#3) pot holds 2.9 gallons of soil
- 5-gallon (#5) pot holds 4.9 gallons of soil
What you actually should be concerned with is the dimensions of the pot rather than capacity because let’s face it the size of the hole you dig is dependent on the dimensions, not the capacity.
These are approximate measurements and dimensions vary from manufacturer to manufacturer but all dimensions fall in the following specifications.
- 1 Gallon Pot - 6.5 to 7.5 inches wide by 7 to 8 inches deep
- 2 Gallon Pot - 8.5 to 9.5 inches wide by 8 to 9 inches deep
- 3 Gallon Pot - 10.5 to 11.5 inches wide by 9.5 to 10.5 inches deep
- 5 Gallon Pot - 12 to 13 inches wide by 11 to 12.5 inches deep
These are approximate measurements and they do vary from supplier to supplier.