Planters, pots, and tubs blossoming with flowers add appeal to nearly any property. Container gardening opens up almost endless possibilities in terms of design and visual appeal. While gardening magazines sure do include impressive imagery of captivating arrangements, we understand that if you’re looking to revamp your outdoor spaces with planters for the first time, it can be intimidating. After all, the sky’s the limit! However, we’ve put together this guide of top considerations for container gardening with planters we hope will give you inspiration and insight when you’re looking to spruce up your property.
Large containers naturally hold more potting soil than their smaller counterparts, which means it’s easier to grow plants in them; the potting mix stays moist for longer and resists temperature fluctuations that can spell doom for plants in more compact spots. No matter the container sizes you have on hand, you’ll need to decide what to plant in each.
Consider the size and shape of a given plant’s root system. We recommend opting for a large pot or tub for a mixed planting — one that will accommodate plant growth — and root growth — for everything you want to showcase.
Regardless of the size, drainage holes are going to be crucial. Without them, the soil will become waterlogged, and plants could die. If a container has no holes, consider drilling some yourself. A container that has no holes — and one you don’t plan to drill holes in yourself — is best used as a cachepot, or cover, to disguise a plain pot. These can be useful for managing sizable plants and heavy pots; grow your plant in a nursery pot that fits inside your decorative container so you can move them separately.
Placement and Design
The wonderful thing about container gardening with planters is the versatility it offers. You don’t need a sprawling landscape that harnesses the power of the full sun each and every day. Planters and containers let you go as big — or modest — as you wish, all while making a statement. Plus, they’re conducive to plenty of different plants, including succulent plants, that don’t require frequent watering. Whether you’re looking to adorn your small yard with a chic corner of tastefully laid out planters or even reserve a spot near your driveway or porch to add some natural charm, container gardening with planters makes for excellent accents nearly anywhere.
Thriller, Spiller, and Filler
This guideline is the trifecta of fundamental container gardening design. The filler is your focal point plant — think a geranium with multicolored leaves. The spiller — aptly named, by the way — is a collective term referring to several plants that “spill” over the edges of the pot, such as petunias, creeping zinnias, even ornamental potatoes. Now, for the filler, plants with small leaves and flowers that add pops of color and “fill” in the arrangement all season long. These could include plants like verbenas, ornamental peppers, and foliage like parsley.
The idea behind this trio is to give your assortment a dynamic visual palette; you don’t want too many pots, planters, and plants themselves looking consistent. In this way, it’s about cohesiveness, not being identical.
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