by Pat Freistatter
Location of Container
- Sunlight – how much sunlight will the container will receive – afternoon sun is hottest – choose plants for those light conditions
- larger leaves with coarse textures and tall spiky grass can be viewed from a distance and make a visual statement
- fine textured plants invite you to look more closely at the detail
- a taller pot may be needed if you want the flowers to be viewed from afar
Container Size and Material
- Container needs to be big enough to hold enough soil for the growing season
- Fiberglass or plastic pots do not dry out as fast as clay and other porous containers.
- Three to seven 1 cm holes need to be drilled into the bottom of container for adequate drainage.
Soil Mixture Contents
- Materials such coconut husk fiber and sphagnum peat moss help retain water
- Black earth (humus), composted manure, perlite, lime, and fertilizer support plants throughout growing season.
Colours and size of plants
- White flowers catch your eyes and help other darker colours jump out
- A variety of leaf shapes and sizes increase drama and interest in your pot
Plant soil and moisture requirements
- All plants in container need to have same moisture requirements – don’t mix plants that like dry conditions with those that prefer wet feet
- Thriller – tall centre
- Filler – plants around thriller
- Spiller – plants that spill over the edge of the container
Note: if the back of your container will be up against a wall, then the taller plants should be at the back
- Check planter daily to ensure it doesn’t dry out
- Fertilize container every couple of weeks with water-soluble fertilizer
- Remove dead flowers to encourage re-blooming.
- Empty and wash out containers at end of season