Designing with Containers
Containers are an excellent way to learn about gardening because they're easy to plant and give great results quickly. They also provide color to highlight patios, steps, garden gates, or any other drab area. Choose containers in styles and materials that harmonize with your landscape. Containers can be placed on paved areas and under trees whose roots fill the ground. In addition, pots are the best places to show off rare and exotic plants. Hanging baskets ornament porches and decks, even where there is not much space for plants. The larger and less crowded the container, the less frequently it will need to be watered. In any raised container, whether it is a tall pot or a hanging basket, plants should trail downward, spread sideways, and grow upward, for the most impact in a small space.
An effective window box combination is ivy or variegated vinca trailing down, petunias filling the middle area, and zonal geraniums standing up. Window boxes should have matching plantings for coherent design. If your containers are weatherproof, you can use perennial plants and dwarf shrubs in them as well as annuals.
Containers eliminate much of the guesswork in gardening. There is no need to tolerate difficult soil or make do with marginal sites. You can start with any potting mix, choosing the perfect blend for the plants you want to grow. You can set the pot where it will have the ideal amount of sun or shade. You provide water when nature comes up short, and you schedule the fertilization. There is nothing left to chance, assuming that you take the time to tend the potted plant. In return, containers become living flower arrangements. With lively color schemes, varied textures, and handsome containers, potted plants grow, flower, and flourish close at hand where they are easily enjoyed.
Containers are perfect for displaying all the colors of summer, and what better way to add color than with annuals? Next, read more about annuals in containers, and how to arrange and group them.