A tantalizing spell of sunny, warm weather had me out on my patio last week. It looks so bare. Most of my pots are still safely tucked into the garage for the winter. Repeated freezing and thawing can crack unglazed pottery. Since we were out of town a lot last year, I didn’t plant anything extra, not wanting to overburden our very gracious house-sitter. This year I’ll be home, and I’m already envisioning my containers.
A simple geranium in a flower pot is fine, but I have grandiose dreams. Paying particular attention to the containers at various botanic gardens has inspired me. Here are three tips on planting spectacular pots.
- Most nursery-bought seedlings come with little tags telling you how far apart to space the baby plants. That’s helpful for bedding annuals and border perennials, but when it comes to containers, ignore the rules. Arrange those transplants root-to-root and cram the container full!
- Be daring. Everyone pots up annuals such as petunias and marigolds, or maybe a few herbs. Do something different. How about purple eggplant combined with lime green sweet potato vine? Or a tall, graceful grass mixed with tiny-flowered verbena? Let your imagination run wild. There are no rules about what can go into a pot. Just make sure the plants you use share similar needs for light and water.
- One pot is nice, but often, more is better. Try a collection of containers for more visual punch. They can either all match, or you can be eclectic. Grouping your pots makes it easier to care for them, too.
There’s a lot of room for expressing yourself, even when creating a garden in such a small space. Let your imagination run wild and see what grows!